As an avid beer drinker, I can dig a festival that brings together beer fanatics and community. Who doesn’t enjoy beer, right? Okay, I admit, there may be some amongst us that don’t enjoy a crisp beer, but I’ll just pretend everyone loves beer for the sake of us all. Now that I have your attention and have spoken for your true passion of beer, let me take a little bit of your time to introduce you to Street Pub Roanoke, courtesy of Deschutes Brewery.
Let me begin to tell you a little about Deschutes Brewery. The brewery was founded in 1988 in Bend, Oregon and has experienced quite the expansion over the last decade. In recent years, my hometown of Roanoke, Virginia was selected to be the new home of its East Coast production facility. The Street Pub has become an annual mid-summer staple in Roanoke, aka The Star City. Deschutes is known nationwide for some of the best craft beers on the market today. My personal favorites are Fresh Squeezed IPA and Mirror Pond Pale Ale.
Now imagine shutting down blocks of busy downtown streets, setting up booths, food trucks, and nonstop beer. Tell me this doesn’t sound like an event that you want to be a part of? While I may be a bit biased, I have a bit more to tell you. Street Pub is held at Elmwood Park and Jefferson Street. The event itself is free to enter, but beer tastings are done via tokens, which are purchased either ahead of time or at the event for $5 each. All proceeds go to support local charities in the Roanoke Valley. Yes, you heard that correctly. You not only get to drink cold brews to quench your thirst on a hot summer day, but your hard-earned money will be put to good use in the community afterward. A win-win in my book. At select times throughout the event, you have the option to line up to sample special release beers that you can’t find in store or in the pub. Regardless of your beer preferences, this is a must if you expect to get the full experience. To top it off, there are multiple stages on either end of the Street Pub featuring great local bands. You can have a seat in the amphitheater or sit in the grass while enjoying the local music. Take your pick or alternate between stages. Did I mention the music is free?
This annual event just completed its third year on July 14th. While it may be too late to join in on the fun this summer, you better believe it will surely make a triumphant return next year! Roanokers have quickly grown to love their new “local” brew, and I hope you will join us next summer to see just how spectacular this event is. Use the time to get yourself acquainted with Deschutes Brewery and their excellent selection of beers. I promise you will want to check out the Street Pub for yourself next year if you do!
And remember, if you do attend, please don’t drink and drive.
Jason Westmoreland, Contributing Writer