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Windermere Observer Wednesday, Oct. 9, 2019 1 week ago

Sixth Annual Windermere Craft Beer Fest on tap Saturday

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The event will feature 30 breweries for attendees to try.
by: Tim Freed Managing Editor

Windermere’s premier beer event is back for another round.

The town will be hosting the sixth annual Windermere Craft Beer Fest Saturday, Oct. 12. Residents will have a chance to sample a variety of beers all while supporting the Windermere Police Foundation, the Florida Brewers Guild and improvements to Windermere’s Downtown Business District.

General admission gets patrons a souvenir sampling cup to go around the festival and try whatever they please. With 30 breweries on tap, along with food vendors and live music, this year’s rendition will be the largest ever.

Event organizer and Windermere Town Council Member Chris Sapp said he’s expecting a bigger turnout this year, as well. Last year, the event sold out at 600 tickets, and this year — with the additional breweries — the event is capping at 750 tickets.

Each brewery will have direct representation at the tents, Sapp said.

“You do have somebody there with a — for the most part — direct and vested interest in the brewery, whether they’re a brew master themselves or somebody that works directly with the brewery, as opposed to a distributor,” Sapp said. “We do pride ourselves in that regard. There’s a good connect between the two, where a customer or sampler can speak and talk and educate themselves directly with the brewery themselves.”

The event also includes an eclectic mix of breweries — from the unestablished and brand-new to the well-known breweries in production and distribution.

“The consumer can try out other beers — the idea behind that is for somebody to try something, like it and ask their local bar, pub or restaurant about that particular beer or how to get it on tap,” Sapp said. “It’s a win for the breweries, because that’s the best way to market your product.”

Money that benefits the Downtown Business District helps pay for improvements such as new landscaping throughout the area. The Windermere Police Foundation, a nonprofit established in honor of fallen Windermere Police Department officer Robert German, gives back to the community with events and helps the families of other fallen officers. The Florida Brewers Guild lobbies for small, independent breweries at the state level and offers scholarships for education.

All the causes are supported by the event, Sapp said.

“(The festival is) 100% nonprofit — it’s more of a community-type event,” he said.

When it comes to the Windermere Craft Beer Fest, Sapp said people can expect one thing for sure.

“They’re going to be able to try something they’ve never had before,” he said.

Tim Freed is the Managing Editor for the West Orange Times & Observer and the Windermere Observer. He previously spent six years covering the Winter Park/Maitland area and is a graduate of the University of Central Florida....

See All Articles by Tim

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