The 12th Annual Ohio Brew Week is upon Athens, where dozens of breweries will bring their beer to the bricks.
Ohio Brew Week will span from July 14-22. Beer from over 40 Ohio breweries will be at more than 20 venues on Athens’ Court Street and beyond. Venues include the Cat’s Eye Saloon, The C.I. and many more.
Apart from drinking craft beer, there will be many events over the course of the week, including live music, karaoke and televised baseball matches for sport enthusiasts.
“(Ohio Brew Week) was started as a way to promote business in uptown Athens at bars and restaurants during the summer months when all the students are gone,” Isaac Noland, the marketing director for the event, said.
Along with bringing more people to the bricks uptown, the goal of brew week is also to get people from out of town to come.
“It was designed to use the burgeoning craft beer industry as sort of a catalyst to spur this business,” Noland said.
During the course of the event, each bar will have taps only from local breweries. Brew Week also welcomes local wineries, meaderies, distilleries and cideries. There will be winery and brewery bus tours as well, according to Noland. The bus tours will be a new addition to brew week.
“The brew week team really is just excited to show off Athens and what it has to offer,” Noland said.
Another goal of Ohio Brew Week is to bring more than just business to participating vendors.
“We hope to create business for bars, restaurants, hotels and more in Athens, while promoting the Ohio craft beer industry,” Noland said.
Lucky’s Sports Tavern, like many of the other Athens bars, will feature beer from Catawba Island Brewing Company. According to Andy Irwin, an employee at Lucky’s Sports Tavern, there will be representatives from the brewery at Lucky's on Saturday to answer any questions patrons have.
“I expect brew week to be extremely popular this year,” Irwin said. “Last year was the first brew week I’ve ever experienced, and I loved it.”
Irwin, along with most of the other Lucky’s Sports Tavern employees, are having a bar shuffle to celebrate Ohio Brew Week.
“All of us get together on Tuesday night and go around to most of the bars and try all of the different beers,” Irwin said.
Irwin is mostly looking forward to trying beer from breweries from his hometown near Toledo.
“We expect visitors to fall in love with Athens,” Noland said. “(And for) locals to visit places in town they might not regularly go and for everyone to enjoy a wide range of quality brews from our great state.”