Brewfest serves up fun

By Brenda Erdahl:

Rain in the morning later turned into a beautiful, sunny day by the time Maple Lake’s fourth annual Brewfest got underway at Irish Stadium, Saturday, June 16.

An estimated 175 people attended the event that showcases local brewers and offers a good time to participants and visitors that includes music, food, and of course: alcohol.

The morning’s rain may have kept a few people away, Lee Ann Yager, one of the organizers said, but the crowd was about its usual size and everyone she talked to had something good to say.

“We got a lot of nice compliments from people,” she said.

As usual, guests were invited to vote for their favorite brew among the 90 or so craft beers available for sampling. This year, Aegir Brewing Co. of Elk River went home with the coveted Taster’s Choice Award.

Charlie Bush served sandwiches and Bernatello’s Foods from Maple Lake served pizza. Those who visited the Bernatello’s booth were also given the chance to play a round of bean-bag toss for prizes.

Everett Smithson entertained with a mix of bluegrass and Cajun music, and even pulled out the washboard. A crowd of volunteers helped the event run smoothly.

A fifth Brewfest is expected to take place next summer although there might be some changes, Yager said. Right now, the City of Maple Lake organizes the event, but several other groups have expressed interest in taking it over. Next year is also the year Maple Lake is scheduled to host the State Amateur Baseball Tournament at Irish Stadium which could create some scheduling conflicts. Yager hopes to continue to hold the event at the stadium and she thinks that’s possible with some coordination. She may also suggest pushing the event later into the summer to avoid local conflicts such as Buffalo Days and state high school athletic tournaments.

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