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The 14th Annual Ohio Brew Week will be celebrated in Athens from July 12-20. (provided via

Fall Fest to showcase local beer on top of parking garage

 Ohio Brew Week (OBW) will host its third Fall Fest on Friday at 4 p.m. on top of the Athens City Parking Garage, 15 E. Washington St. The event is free, family-friendly, and features local beers, ciders and music. 

OBW wanted to have an event that more students could come to and enjoy the late-summer weather in Athens, Brandon Thompson, executive director of OBW said. 

“It’s a lot of fun,“ Thompson said. “The idea is that Brew Week happens in July and people kind of forget about us, but people are still enjoying craft beer.” 

Though it’s called Fall Fest, students shouldn’t think of it as a traditional Ohio University fest. “Fest” can be a misnomer, Thompson said. But that shouldn’t discourage students from coming. 

“It’s really people getting together to hang out and enjoy each other,” he said. “It makes for a nice evening.”  

The night will feature four musical acts: The Tangled Roots, Larry Elefante, DJ A-roc and DJ B-Funk. On one end of the parking garage will be music, and the other will serve beer. 

“We’re outlaw country, back-porch uncle music,” Michael Rutushin, band leader of Larry Elefante, said. “Music that if your uncle threw a party in the country. Danceable music, too.”

Taylor Major-Dame sees Fall Fest as a great spin-off of OBW in the summer.

“I guess Fall Fest is kind of a mini-Brew Week,” Major-Dame, a server at Jackie-O’s Public House and Brewpub, said. “One of the highlights of working at Jackie-O’s is events like these,” she said. 

Major-Dame recommends Sparhawk, a German-style bock beer, which has the namesake of Jon Sparhawk, a founder of Ohio Brew Week.

“My favorite part is all of the people that come out of town to try our beers.,” Major-Dame said. “I love talking about beer. That’s the best part.”

Thompson also noted that Fall Fest still needs volunteers. 

“We still need people to volunteer,” he said. “You do have to be 21 to pour beer, but we have other needs too.”

Volunteering comes with its perks. A free shirt, free beer tasting, three OBW tokens and three volunteer hours.

“It’s a 3 hour shift and you get to taste the beers,” Thompson said. “(You) get about two and half free beers on shift.”

Dan Harlett, owner of the Groggy Dog hot dog cart, vended at this summer’s Brew Week. He appreciated the atmosphere it brought to the residents of Athens. 

“It’s good for the community to get together,” he said.

Although summer is gone, the warm weather of early September still provides a great atmosphere for enjoying a cold one outdoors. The top floor of the parking garage makes for a fantastic view, Thompson said.

“Perfect time to grab a beer and watch the sunset,” he said. “It’s an awesome view of Athens.”

Tokens from this summer’s Brew Week can be used at Fall Fest. More information about the event can be found on Facebook. To sign up to volunteer, fill out a form here.


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