LAKEWOOD - With the coming of spring comes the chance to enjoy weekends sipping beers and enjoy barbecue outdoors with friends.
Southern Tier Brewing Company will be the place to do that this weekend, as the brewery observes American Craft Beer Week with a handful of events that will culminate with its first-ever Beerfest - during which six visiting breweries will join the host in the festivities.
The fun will begin in the brewing company's Empty Pint Pub on Thursday evening, when bar patrons will compete for prizes in a Beer Trivia Night. Questions will be served up during the pub's normal business hours of 4 to 10 p.m. Then, Friday evening, the band Driftwood will play on the pub's outdoor stage from 6 to 10 p.m.
The taps at Southern Tier Brewing Company’s Empty Pint will be flowing Thursday through Saturday as the brewery celebrates American Craft Beer Week with a series of special events.
P-J file photo by Aimee Frederick
It's all in preparation for the main event, Beerfest, which will be held Saturday from 1 to 5 p.m. Nathan Arnone, media representative for Southern Tier Brewing Company, said that the event is a chance for beer aficionados to sample beers they otherwise would have to travel many miles to taste.
''They'll be able to try beer from some breweries that they wouldn't have a chance to try unless they actually went there,'' Arnone said.
Breweries that will be represented at Southern Tier's Beerfest event on Saturday will be Custom Brewcrafters from Honeoye Falls, N.Y.; Ellicottville Brewing Company; Empire Brewing Company from Buffalo; Erie Brewing Company from Erie, Pa.; Ithaca Beer Company; and Three Heads Brewing Company from Rochester.
What: Southern Tier Brewing Company
When: 1 p.m. Saturday
Where: 2072 Stoneman Circle, Lakewood
Sample beers from seven craft brewers. Enjoy live music by the Skiffle Minstrels and barbecue from Hog Wild.
* 5.8 miles from
Arnone said that brewmasters from many of the breweries will be in attendance to talk with people and answer questions about their beers and the brewing process. A circus tent from Jamestown Awning will be used to house all the breweries and patrons, Arnone said, allowing the event to be held rain or shine. Live music will be provided throughout the afternoon by the Skiffle Minstrels from Buffalo, and Hog Wild from Warren will be serving barbecue.
According to its Facebook page, American Craft Beer Week was founded in 2006 with the mission ''to encourage beer lovers everywhere to celebrate the accomplishments of America's small and independent craft brewers.''
''It's a national event, and we're just getting into it,'' Arnone said. ''It'll be a good weekend, even if it's pouring rain.''
All attendees to any event at the brewery must be 21 years of age or older.
Tickets to the Beerfest event on Saturday are $30, with pre-sale being encouraged by the brewery. However, tickets will also be available at the door the afternoon of the event. Cost of admission does not include the barbecue meal from Hog Wild, which is an additional cash-only charge.
Other upcoming events at Southern Tier Brewing Company include a beer-and-cheese pairing party co-hosted by Wegmans on Saturday, June 25, and a Summerfest event featuring reggae music and keg bowling on Saturday, July 16.
To reserve tickets or get more information, go online to www.southerntierbrewing.com or visit the brewery - located at 2072 Stoneman Circle, near the intersection of Hunt and Big Tree roads, in Lakewood. By phone, call 763-5479.