Beer party in the bosque: Festival provides easy access from the bike trails

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ABQ BearFest will be held May 24 at Boxing Bear Brewing Company with nine New Mexico breweries participating. (Courtesy of Boxing Bear Brewing Company)

New Mexico’s best of the best in craft brewing are coming together for an intimate festival known as BearFest 2015.

Boxing Bear Brewing Company will host the craft beer party in its parking lot on May 24. The event will feature a number of award-winning beers, some specialties and cider from nine New Mexico breweries: Boxing Bear, Bosque Brewing Co., Canteen Brewhouse, Chama River Brewing Co., La Cumbre Brewing Co., Marble Brewery, Nexus Brewery, Santa Fe Brewing Co. and Turtle Mountain Brewing Co.

“It’s a very small community of brewers that we have at this event,” Boxing Bear co-owner Kevin Davis said. “This is a business that is growing rapidly. There are a lot of breweries opening up every month it seems. New breweries keep coming.”

Boxing Bear will be offering up a couple of its “special, more popular house beers,” Davis said. It also will have its AppleBear Hard Cider available for cider enthusiasts and those on a gluten-free diet.

“There will be staples and seasonals from all the breweries,” Davis said. “There will be nine breweries that will maybe have five different beers each. There will be more than 50 beers at the event.”

Ticket holders will get a free pint and a few samples of their choice. Pints also will be available for purchase during the event.

“We like the fact this is not just a sampling event,” Davis said. “This is a pint event. For their entry fee, the first 1,000 people get a pint glass, plus they get a free pint, plus four 4-ounce samples instead of a 2-ounce sample, which is a good bit of beer.”

Sip on a pint while enjoying live music from Cali Shaw and Red Light Cameras. Take in the music as well as a variety of delectable edibles available for purchase from four local food trucks. Vendors also will be selling their cool and creative merchandise.

“It’s going to be a good time,” Davis said. “We have a perfect venue. You can ride your bike. We are right on the trails right on the bosque. You can walk or jog or drive. It’s kind of a cool festival.”

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