2014 Great American Beer Festival. Who's going?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by jamdugan, Jul 15, 2014.

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  1. jamdugan

    jamdugan Initiate (70) Mar 30, 2006 Oregon
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    This will be my first year ( if I can get tickets lol) Can I buy multiple tickets with my AHA member number, or just tickets for myself?

    Anyone else planning on Denver in September?

    http://www.beeradvocate.com/events/info/65035/
     
  2. Hop-Droppen-Roll

    Hop-Droppen-Roll Initiate (0) Nov 5, 2013 Minnesota

    Is it always in Denver?
     
  3. jamdugan

    jamdugan Initiate (70) Mar 30, 2006 Oregon
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  4. BBThunderbolt

    BBThunderbolt Poo-Bah (9,116) Sep 24, 2007 Kiribati
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    Sadly, yes. Lots of folks would like to see it move around. But, with the BA being based in the Denver area, they're not giving up that cash flow.
     
  5. Hop-Droppen-Roll

    Hop-Droppen-Roll Initiate (0) Nov 5, 2013 Minnesota

    I'd like to see it merge with the GAWF. I'd buy a plane ticket for that :wink:
     
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  6. TillTheMedicineTakes

    TillTheMedicineTakes Initiate (0) Jul 13, 2014 Colorado

    You guys are acting like having it in Denver is a bad thing!
     
  7. Phocion

    Phocion Initiate (0) Aug 5, 2005 Minnesota

    I'd rather it be at the Minnesota State Fair Grounds, but the only reason is because I could walk (stumble) home afterwards. Selfishness aside, Denver is as good of location as any.
     
  8. KarlHungus

    KarlHungus Poo-Bah (3,423) Feb 19, 2005 Minnesota
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    It's certainly an inconvenience when you don't live in Colorado. Denver is one of the best beer cities in the world, and I'm sure I'd have a blast attending GABF there. I'll eventually make it out one of these years, but I'd certainly go if it were being held somewhere closer to where I live. That said, the BA has no incentive to move it as it sells out freakishly fast every year.
     
  9. yort2009

    yort2009 Initiate (55) Sep 20, 2009 Iowa
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    You can buy 2 tickets total (for member session) and they are transferable to non-members. I went last year to the Saturday session for the first time and had a blast. To be honest, the bars around Denver had so much good beer that I wasn't that impressed by much at the festival other than the size. A lot of the breweries didn't even pour beer on Saturday.
     
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  10. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Poo-Bah (1,867) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan
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    It is the one event close to the BA home office in Boulder. The BA also does events including the CBC (rotates, but for the pros), SAVOR (usually DC), and the NHC for AHA members (rotates). Having one close to home must not suck.
     
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  11. BBThunderbolt

    BBThunderbolt Poo-Bah (9,116) Sep 24, 2007 Kiribati
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    True. But it would seem that we (craft beer industry and consumers) could reach out and grow the industry if we took it to more cities. Denver could still have every 3rd-4th year, but how about GABF in Boston, Atlanta, PDX, SFO, Austin, Chicago, Minneapolis, Charlotte, or Western Michigan?

    I know a fair number of industry folks, and they have to go, it's their industries big deal, but they're getting a bit bored with going to the same places, and taking the same tours every year. If the BA is to help promote the industry as a whole, and support the individual breweries, the topic of rotating sites is worthy of consideration.
     
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  12. jkblodge

    jkblodge Initiate (0) Jun 27, 2005 Maryland

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  13. jamdugan

    jamdugan Initiate (70) Mar 30, 2006 Oregon
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    I'd like to get tix for my Brother, he's not a AHA member. Can I also purchase 2 tickets for the Saturday eve session? (in the member presale)
     
  14. BBThunderbolt

    BBThunderbolt Poo-Bah (9,116) Sep 24, 2007 Kiribati
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    Cool link! I would suspect that, now with years more general experience, and the experience of running multiple events outside their living, an "away game" wouldn't be as big a deal. IIRC, a couple years there were both Rockies and Broncos home games going on the same time as GABF in Denver. If Brazil can pull off the Olympics and World Cup back-to-back, BA should be able to figure out a way.
     
  15. Dil_thebeerdrinking_do

    Dil_thebeerdrinking_do Initiate (0) Jan 21, 2014 Georgia

    GABF belongs in Denver. I myself will be going for the first time this year, traveling from the east coast. Luckily I will have my warm up beer fest in beer camp tour in august. Plus I am going to see Peyton play for possibly the last time! Going to the members event. Let me know if you want to do any trades. GA/NC distro.
     
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  16. lightman1

    lightman1 Initiate (86) Oct 19, 2013 Arkansas
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    I'm planning on going. It will be my 3rd time. Its a 1000 mile drive for me, but I bring back tons of beer! I agree, It belongs in Denver!
     
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  17. KarlHungus

    KarlHungus Poo-Bah (3,423) Feb 19, 2005 Minnesota
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    If you've never been to GABF how can you assert with any confidence that it "belongs in Denver"?
     
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  18. TillTheMedicineTakes

    TillTheMedicineTakes Initiate (0) Jul 13, 2014 Colorado

    It "belongs" in Denver because it's always been there.
    Why try to move it and make things a bigger hassle?
     
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  19. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Poo-Bah (1,867) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan
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    That is a noble cause you champion. How many of those cities or regions that you listed have big enough convention centers, favorable laws for a festival like GABF, and the logistics and distributors to make it happen. GABF also uses a large amount of experienced volunteers from what I understand (never been, on my bucket list), so do you think those will show up elsewhere?

    Edit - ask your industry contacts if the rotating CBC is good enough for their desire for something different.
     
  20. KarlHungus

    KarlHungus Poo-Bah (3,423) Feb 19, 2005 Minnesota
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    Tradition is the most close minded reasoning to do anything. It seems to always lead to the thought: we've always done it this way so there is absolutely no way it come ever be done better, and I refuse to even contemplate that there could be.

    Also, more of a hassle for whom? Those of you who live in Colorado? Is that hassle not currently the burden of the rest of us who have to travel to Colorado to attend the festival? The Brewer's Association is meant to represent the national craft brewing scene, and, although there a breweries from around the country at GABF (or more correctly beers from breweries from around the country at GABF as a lot of breweries don't have the funds to send representatives to Colorado every year), it is run as if it were a regional festival--in the same city with the same set up.
     
  21. BBThunderbolt

    BBThunderbolt Poo-Bah (9,116) Sep 24, 2007 Kiribati
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    What large city doesn't have a convention center/arena that size? One of the complaints I hear is that the facility used is too small, and that's why there's so many breweries who want to pour at the fest can't get in.Look at the clusterfuck last years sign-up was. They've taken steps to improve, and I'm not ragging on BA, but maybe it's time to revisit the idea. Vegas and New Orleans could host GABF, and not even notice, it would be just another convention. I have no clue how many big conventions/trade shows/etc Denver hosts, but there's lots of cities that host a lot of 'em. CBC is a different animal, IIRC, there's not the huge public event that GABF has.

    Again, not picking on Denver, or BA. Of the list I posted, only Western Michigan probably isn't set up to handle it, but Detroit would be, even WM has the better beer scene.
     
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  22. KarlHungus

    KarlHungus Poo-Bah (3,423) Feb 19, 2005 Minnesota
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    If the Brewer's Association wants to champion craft beer wouldn't it be beneficial to try to use the leverage of the possibility of holding a huge beer festival in a particular area to get some state and local laws changed? We shouldn't just automatically jump to the conclusion that all difficulties that may be encountered in the process of change are insurmountable.
     
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  23. BBThunderbolt

    BBThunderbolt Poo-Bah (9,116) Sep 24, 2007 Kiribati
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    As it happens, this was going around FB today. See those two blue squares in Colorado? Those are the folks for whom it's not a hassle to get to GABF.


    http://mentalfloss.com/article/57832/half-country-lives-these-counties
     
  24. TillTheMedicineTakes

    TillTheMedicineTakes Initiate (0) Jul 13, 2014 Colorado

    This is a very large festival. It takes a bunch of coordination and such. Why try to make it a moving one where it would not go as smooth as having it the same place?
    Denver is also located near the middle of the country. Making it accessible, plus a huge airport.
    Plus, you can puff legal here now too.
     
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  25. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Poo-Bah (1,867) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan
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    The DeVoss center in GR can handle 5000, as you maybe thought through. Detroit does not have a beer scene to support it.

    The recent NHC was in GR. Some laws had to be changed to make it legal. Austin was in the running for the same time frame, but legal issues got in the way. Texas alcohol laws are different than CO.

    There was some press that the GABF will get 2X the floor space in a coming year. That would allow more breweries to participate in the pouring process. Of course the competition is limited by the number of qualified judges.
     
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  26. BBThunderbolt

    BBThunderbolt Poo-Bah (9,116) Sep 24, 2007 Kiribati
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    "Plus, you can puff legal here now too."
    Washington too. GABF in Omak!!!
     
  27. TillTheMedicineTakes

    TillTheMedicineTakes Initiate (0) Jul 13, 2014 Colorado

    Yeah, you can in Washington too. But, there are still many other reasons to keep it where it is.
    You can venture outside your bubble of Omak and experience GABF in Denver.
     
  28. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Poo-Bah (1,867) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan
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    That has been true since I was a young pup, and I am an old fart now.

    If you want some real feed back, contact the Brewers Association and see why the GABF is kept in Denver.
     
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  29. BBThunderbolt

    BBThunderbolt Poo-Bah (9,116) Sep 24, 2007 Kiribati
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    We know why it's kept there. It's a home game. They've been doing it a long time, have developed the contacts locally, and it's just plain easier for them. I'm certain the hotels and restaurants love being able to count on the yearly income, and are willing to do whatever favors they can for BA. It would take time to recreate that in other places, but it could be done. As craft beer grows beyond being a niche product, and gains foothold with the general population, perhaps BA will take a look at other options. But, probably not.
     
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  30. BBThunderbolt

    BBThunderbolt Poo-Bah (9,116) Sep 24, 2007 Kiribati
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    Nah, it'd probably conflict with the rodeo.
     
  31. KarlHungus

    KarlHungus Poo-Bah (3,423) Feb 19, 2005 Minnesota
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    This more or less exemplifies my views of how the BA has transformed from operating as a grassroots movement to what more closely resembles operating as a for profit corporation, or even, dare I say, a government. They go out of their way to pander to their corporate sponsors/beneficiaries while disregarding thier original purpose. What ever happened to them promoting the expansion of craft beer? I think the BA could really do that by moving the GABF around.
     
    #31 KarlHungus, Jul 16, 2014
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2014
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  32. DoubleJ

    DoubleJ Poo-Bah (5,873) Oct 13, 2007 Wisconsin
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    I can't go to 2014 GABF, because I'll be at 2014 SIDCA.
     
  33. 19etz55

    19etz55 Disciple (316) Aug 12, 2007 New Jersey
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    Beer Bucket List.
     
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  34. HumanParaquat

    HumanParaquat Initiate (0) Jun 23, 2011 Indiana

    I'm hoping to go this year for the first time...any idea how fast the tickets will sell out?
     
  35. EOTLBrewer

    EOTLBrewer Initiate (0) Dec 18, 2011 Illinois

    This year will be the first for me as well, courtesy of Sam Adams I have an all expense paid trip! Very excited!
     
  36. Quaffer

    Quaffer Crusader (776) Jan 31, 2003 Nevada

    I've been a few times and Denver is a great place for it. With all the practice they've had, the local beer scene really pulls together and makes the event a great experience. You might find that the best times you have at GABF are not actually at the fest itself. If I ever go back to Denver during GABF, I probably won't bother to buy fest tickets.

    By the way, this thread is the first time I have seen people seriously state that they think GABF should be somewhere other than Denver.
     
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  37. yort2009

    yort2009 Initiate (55) Sep 20, 2009 Iowa
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    Last year my girlfriends sister had 4 different devices trying to get in line with the Ticketmaster queues. Ticketmaster is always a pain in the ass, but I'm guessing if there were other services that could handle the volume for the right price they would be used. I believe tickets sold out in like like 19 minutes or something ridiculous. The member pre-sale sold out even faster I believe and I remember reading a lot of rants afterwords.
     
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  38. HRamz3

    HRamz3 Initiate (0) Feb 9, 2010 Pitcairn
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    Great article! Brings back lots of good memories, I went to my first GABF in 1994 (and last in 2005, never again).
     
  39. richobrien

    richobrien Initiate (0) Dec 29, 2013 California

    Hoping to go this year, wife can't so I will be flying solo.
     
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  40. troygreer

    troygreer Initiate (0) Jan 22, 2006 Pennsylvania
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    I have seen this sentiment a few times and wonder why? What is it about the fest that you guys don't like? I went (during the members session) for the first time last year and had a blast. Yeah there was some great stuff going on around the city as well during that weekend but there was some great beer pouring during the Saturday session.

    You know what is going to pour well in advance of the session (via the GABF app) which made it easy for me to target a few beers that I have always wanted to try.
     
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