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September 5, 2013

Brew Fest returns Sept. 21

AMESBURY — The Amesbury Sports Park will be hosting the 7th Annual Brew Fest on Saturday, Sept. 21, from 1 to 6 p.m. at its facility at 12 South Hunt Road. The Brew Fest will feature more than 100 microbrews, barbecue, Zorb rides, sumo wrestling, beer Olympics and live music on an outdoor stage.

The park’s Brew Fest attracted more than 6,000 people last year; organizers say they are expecting up to 7,000 people to attend the all-day event this year.

More than 30 representatives from various breweries will be onsite and available to discuss the history, brewing processes and subtle nuances of their favorite brews. While the focus of the Brew Fest is on craft brews, there will be a handful of more mainstream beers like Coors Light for the slightly less adventurous. Not crazy about beer? There will also be a few sample stations featuring Angry Orchard Cider, Ipswich Rum and Seňor Sangria.

“While some of our favorites like Slumbrew (Somerville Brewing Company) will be back this year, we have some exciting new ones to showcase,” said MaryCarol Fowler, the sports park president. “We’re happy to welcome the new Newburyport Brewery, who will be serving up their Pale Ale, Plum Island Belgian Ale and Greenhead IPA. Foolproof Brewing from Rhode Island will be pouring their popular Backyahd IPA and Barstool Golden Ale.”

Back by popular demand is the Sam Adams official Stein Hoisting Competition, in which guests hold a full stein of Sam Adams’ Octoberfest out at arm’s length — the one who can hold the beer the longest will win a VIP tour of the Sam Adams Brewery in Boston. The Beer Olympics will return to the event, allowing guests to participate in a variety of challenges that involve beer in unique ways.

Aside from beer, barbecue and bands, the Brew Fest will feature Zorb rides and summer tubing. The Zorb is an 11-foot inflatable transparent sphere with another inflated sphere suspended inside it. Riders enter the Zorb and strap themselves into a harness, or enter the Zydro with up to three people and 5 gallons of water and are pushed over the edge of an 800-foot-long grassy slope.

Entry to the Brew Fest is $15 and includes a tasting cup. Once inside, sample tickets are available for $1 per 3-ounce sample. The sample tents will be open to the public from 1 to 6 p.m. Tickets are available online at www.AmesburySportsPark.net and at the gate the day of the event. Guests must be 21 with a valid ID unless accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.

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