Squamish Beer Fest

Squamish, you magnificent bastard!

You hosted one hell of a show last week and really rocked it from stem to stern.  The “show” of which I speak was the Squamish Beer Festival, held on the grounds of O’Siyam Pavillion and preceded by a Brewer’s Dinner up the Sea to Sky Gondola the night before.  I attended both of these beauties and Boy Howdy were they the business!

Brewer’s Dinner:

First of all, any time you can take the gondola up to the top the mighty Stawamus Chief I suggest you do so.  The views are second to none but for reasons unexplained, I neglected to take a picture.  Trust me: it’s worth the price of the lift ticket.

My initial thought, pre-party, was to rock up to every person I saw and ask if they were a brewer.  If they answered in the affirmative I’d pepper them with questions and we’d instantly become best friends.  This plan did have it’s flaws.  Not the least of which being that I’m an introvert AND an extrovert.  The aspect that establishes dominance depends largely on circumstance and whether or not Mercury is in retrograde.  Unfortunately for me and my new potential best friends, when I stepped out of the gondola cabin and strolled into a crowd of strangers, Mercury mic-dropped and the Introvert headed towards the stage.  Shit.  WHERE THE HELL IS THE BEER!?! I’M DYING OVER HERE!!

a few pints later…

“Hey!  Are you a Brewer?”

“Nope.”

“Okay, Bye.”

S2SBG turns head and addresses person to his left.  “Hey!  Are you a Brewer?”

“Yup.”

“Tell me all your secrets.  Right now!”

Brewer turns head and addresses person S2SBG dismissed earlier, points to S2SBG.  “Who the fuck is that guy?”

Okay, so it didn’t exactly go down that way.  But I did sip some liquid courage (what was on tap?  Why A-Frame, Backcountry and Howe Sound Brewing, of course: you’re in Sea to Sky Country now, motherfucker!) and the Extrovert took over as the less confident aspect of my ego exited stage right .  It helped that everybody on scene was there to have a good time, so gosh-darn it: a good time was had!

You ready for some iambic pentameter?  I chatted with friends both old and new and with some of the new, axes we threw!

I’m pretty sure that wasn’t iambic pentameter.  I’m pretty sure this whole section is garbage but I’m too tired to try again so it stays.  Axewood.  Axe-throwing is fun.  Go get some.

 

Who had the most bulls-eyes? The double-axed dummy looking into the right camera, that’s who! Boom.

 

There were so many great people mingling out and about that night that this post couldn’t cover the scene, so I’ll just say BC’s craft beer industry is in good hands and has great fans.

As the night progressed, so did the accuracy of the mosquito’s proboscis, so a few folk decided to take the party down to sea level and headed to Howe Sound Brewing.  Nikki, a server at HSB and one of the finer human beings you’ll find on this blue-green planet, gave me a big ol’ hug as we darkened Howe Sound’s doors and got into some serious merry-making.  When the cab finally delivered me to my bed (I had to exit the vehicle, go and get under the covers myself, but that would be one HELLUVA service to provide and I’d probably go as high as 20%.  Especially if he brushed my teeth for me!) I remember thinking what an amazing night I’d just had and could the Festival the next day possibly compare?  Spoiler Alert: it totally did.

Squamish Beer Fest

I woke with a mild hangover and a few sore muscles (must’ve been all that kick-ass axe-throwing!) but knew the cure for all those ailments: a couple hours of home renovation.  My In-laws were in town, partly to play with their grandchildren but mostly to help assemble kitchen cabinets.  My Father in-law is a builder, so it was invaluable to have him on hand while I read thru the Swedish pictographs and counted how many Allen keys we’d accumulated.  Thanks again, Paul, and thanks for spending your birthday busting your butt.

When we’d built all the boxes we could it was time to mop up the blood, sweat & tears and start sipping from small cups: LET’S GO TO BEER FEST!

The Beer Mobile (a sweet AF Dodge Grand Caravan, if you must know) was full to the brim with enthusiasts: myself, my Dad, my Father in-law, my friend, Treena, and MBW at the wheel and in no time flat we had arrived.  I didn’t take many pictures and the Maestro (my drinking buddy photographer friend from a previous post) was in attendance but his only duty this day was drinking, so what follows is an abbreviated account of the awesomeness on hand.  Again, there’s no way I could do all the Breweries in attendance justice so here’s a few in alphabetical order:

A-Frame Brewing’s A-Frame: housing some fine brews for summer consumption.  But wait.  Where’s Jeff?

 

 

There’s Jeff!  Behind the scenes, changin’ taps or takin’ craps, you be the judge.

 

 

An OBVIOUSLY inebriated beer enthusiast alongside one of my favorites from East Van

I’d met the Andina crew at the Brewer’s Dinner and they were as lovely and  inviting as the beers they brew.

 

DJ Hebejebe laying down the sick beats as Backcountry Brewing layed out the sick brews!

 

Adam and Lysa, servin’ up the good times!

I like to think that the owner of the disembodied hand at the bar is a practitioner of positive energy: if I WILL the glass to be full it will be so.  If I WILL the glass to my hand it will be so.  Welcome to Squamish, Beau’s Brewing, love your work!

 

Kevin and Co. from the kick-ass Coast Mountain Brewing.

Coast is a favorite of my father’s, with The Surveyor being his brew of choice, but the Habitual Drifter and Wild Creatures were sublime, Baby!

 

This guy.

I’m a big fan of enthusiasm and this guy was on point!  Even if Hearthstone’s product wasn’t amazing (which it most definitely is!) I’d hang out just to BS for a bit.

 

Howe Sound holding it down!

Full disclosure: I didn’t drink any beer from HSB’s tent this day.

Fuller disclosure: I drank MANY beers from HSB the night before.

 

Persephone, you hold a place close to my heart.  It’s my liver.  No, but seriously: my first post as a blogger was about you and I love all that you do.  I’m making my away across the Sound this summer and can hardly wait to see the farm for the first time.

Well folks, that’s about it. Squamish is beautiful.  If you’ve not been, you really should.  The people that put together the Squamish Beer Fest are beautiful too.  They busted their ass off this year and accomplished the impossible task of making this town even more desirous.  When the next Squamish Beer Festival rolls around, get your tickets early ‘cuz this one sold out: the Sea to Sky is no longer a secret.   Let me just finish with this picture of some dedicated drummers and harmonious horn players:

These cats could wail (caterwaul?) and their costumes and attention to form confirmed my suspicions: they were not of this world.  What they were was eclectic and “switched-on” and just one of the many facets on Squamish Beer Festival’s beautiful diamond.  Shine on, Baby!

S2SBG

 

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