Strap in, the most important weekend in beer is upon us in Metro Vancouver

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There’s so much happening in the world of craft beer this weekend, I think it’s important to pause, take a deep breath, and prepare ourselves. Gird our livers, so to speak.

We are currently in the midst of B.C. Craft Beer Month, the apex of which happens here in Metro Vancouver on Oct. 19 and 20, so lets dive right into it.

Photo courtesy BCCBC

First up is the second-annual B.C. Craft Brewers Conference takes place on Friday, Oct. 19 at the Croatian Cultural Centre. While this event is obviously geared towards brewers and industry professionals with an entire days worth of seminars planned, hardcore beer nerds will dig the tasting sessions on barrel-aged beers and experimental hops. The best reason to go, though, has to be the Beered Science after party at Science World from 7 pm until midnight. Entry is included with your B.C. Craft Brewers Conference ticket, or can be purchased separately for $40 each.

Also happening on Friday is the kick-off for the North Shore Craft Beer Week, which takes place from 5:30 to 10:30 pm at the Pipe Shop, which is not a weed dispensary, but in fact a gloriously renovated and restored waterfront warehouse in North Vancouver’s Shipyards neighbourhood. North Van’s ever-growing roster of breweries will all be present and pouring, including three breweries that haven’t even opened yet—House of Funk, Wildeye and Streetcar—that will be offering samples of their beers to the public for the very first time.

Pro tip: if you leave early from the North Shore, you can still make it back in time for Beered Science (in a cab, obviously). At least that’s my plan.

The week culminates in the ninth annual B.C. Beer Awards this Saturday, also at the Croatian Cultural Centre. The BCBAs might be my favourite beer event of the year, because it’s the one where the brewers themselves are actually in attendance, often behind the taps. I love being able to pester them with all my inane questions. I’m sure they love it too.

BC Beer Awards

Another reason why it’s so rad: close to 60 of the best breweries in the province (only those entered in the competition get to pour), many of which will be serving fresh hop beers, the chosen style for this year’s B.C. Brewers Challenge.

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Unfortunately, the event sold out in 12 hours months ago. That’s how awesome it is.

But if you don’t have tickets, don’t fret, because there are tons of other awesome craft beer events happening around the province. Check out B.C. Craft Beer Month’s calendar of events, or you can play along at home with the Beer of The Day calendar. Try a different style of beer each day from the fabulous list of local recommendations they have assembled.

Happy craft beering!

The Fall 2018 issue of The Growler is out now! You can find B.C.’s favourite craft beer guide at your local brewery, select private liquor stores, and on newsstands across the province.