Like a local: How Ashevilleans celebrate during Beer Week

Wicked Weed Brewing (photo by Tim Robison)
Wicked Weed Brewing (photo by Tim Robison)

Asheville has one of the best beer scenes around, but also one of the quirkiest. Wondering how the locals celebrate craft beer? Check out the tips below:

Bring your baby. It’s surprisingly common to see people with their babies at bars and breweries around town. (Makes you wonder how many bars and breweries are indirectly responsible for said babies.) Let the kids run wild at Highland Brewing Co.’s Meadow, play games at Asheville Brewing Co. or Burial Beer Co., or enjoy some free popcorn at Lookout Brewing Co. in Black Mountain. There’s no reason Asheville Beer Week can’t be fun for the whole family.

Bring your dog. Fido is welcome at many local establishments, especially breweries. You might even catch a pup behind the bar at Twin Leaf Brewery. Let your mutt hydrate at the water tap at Wicked Weed Brewing’s downstairs patio. Just about anywhere you go, your happy hound is welcome. Fair warning: Pets are not allowed at Beer City Fest.

Let your beard hang low. Something about beer seems to bring out the beards. They will be out in all their hairy glory all week long, so be sure to let yours go wild. What’s that? You don’t have a beard? There’s a great shop on Broadway that sells those stick-on mustaches. Yes, that will do nicely.

Get your homebrew on. Just Brew It is the official Asheville Beer Week kickoff event, a massive homebrew festival with over 50 area homebrewers serving up more than 200 creative concoctions. You might come across a hibiscus wit, a triple IPA, a poblano porter and a honey saison in a matter of minutes. It’s all fair game at Just Brew It. The event supports the local nonprofit Just Economics, an organization that works to implement living wages throughout Western North Carolina. Is your favorite brewery living-wage certified?

Hang out at your favorite local brewery. If you do nothing else all week, get out and support your favorite local brewery. Don’t have a favorite yet? Consider a Brews Cruise, Asheville Brewery Tour or a downtown pub crawl to help you in your “research.”

Spot the biking nun or the Pubcycle. Spend much time in Asheville, and you’re bound to see some interesting sights — a man in drag dressed as a nun riding a bike, for example. “Sister Bad Habit” makes a regular flyby to the Thirsty Monk. We also have a Pubcycle in town – a 13-person, pedal-powered mobile bar. Book the Pubcycle or a LaZoom comedy bus tour (both BYOB) for a one-of-a-kind Asheville Beer Week experience.

Use the #AVLBeerWeek hashtag. Share the fun by tagging all your beer week updates with #AVLBeerWeek. It’s a good way to keep up with what’s happening around town.

Come back next year. You’re just about guaranteed to have a great time at Asheville Beer Week. So go ahead: Put it in the book for next year. You’ll be glad you did.

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About David Ackley
David Ackley is a writer and marketing consultant with a focus on the craft beer industry.

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