Yesterday was my first Oregon Brewers Festival. It wasn’t what I expected. Normally if there is an event at the waterfront you have all tons of booths selling stuff, businesses promoting themselves, and just weird stuff. You don’t have that here but I did see a guy with a pretzel necklace like the candy necklaces kids have. Couldn’t find anyone selling it though.
Instead of booths for the beer they have high tables set up as a bar and there would be ten beers lined up. Behind the servers was a trailer with a placard of which beer they were selling. It seemed underwhelming.
A friend wrote on Facebook that he and his friend thought the festival sucked. And while I was underwhelmed based on expectations, everyone was smiling. Then I got it. This is just the biggest BBQ anyone gets to go to, and without the rides, sideshows, or other draws, you just get beer fans.
You have a handful of restaurants serving burgers, fries, elephant ears (you have to serve those), etc but it’s really about the beer. I was surprised that there were only 36 beers there from Oregon breweries as PortlandBeer.org reported. I guess you won’t have much of a festival with just 36 beers.
If you love beer, this is the place for you. It is what it is and you’ll love it for being just that.