By C.D. DESALVO
The second annual Brews on the Bricks will be Saturday in downtown Hays. The event is put on by the Downtown Hays Development Corp., which collaborated with local breweries in Hays to showcase locally brewed craft beers.
“We approached Gella’s and Defiance Brewery pretty early on and asked them if this was something they would be interested in and if they could help us out in organizing — so it is kind of a DHDC and brewery brainchild. It was so successful last year that we expanded it again this year,” said Sara Bloom, DHDC executive director.
The event has been a hot ticket from the start. In 2016, DHDC sold all 400 general admission tickets and all 75 VIP tickets in four hours.
“Last year exceeded our expectations. It was a new event, but we did a lot of marketing for it. Tickets went on sale on Feb. 1 and sold very quickly — or what we thought was very quick at that time,” Bloom said. “This year, we sold out all 150 VIP tickets and all 800 general admission tickets in 10 minutes. We had 30 people lined up outside in the cold for three hours for tickets.”
Brews on the Bricks is a citywide celebration where people can sample different beers they normally could not find in the community and appreciate the art of brewing and what it takes to craft these beers.
A new feature this year will be a home-brewer competition, featuring home-brewers from around the state. The winner will be decided by attending brewers, and second place will be determined by the general public.
“We actually have a very active Hays home-brew club and they approached us with the idea,” said Bloom. “We have 21 home-brewers participating in this event from all over the state and even one from Nebraska.”
Brews on the Bricks will also have numerous local food vendors and live music. The popular downtown event will close off 10th Street from Fort to Main on Friday and Saturday.
“This event continues to exceed our expectations, and we are trying to grow it as gradually as we can so we can keep it a well-organized event. We look forward to expanding it next year and adding more tickets,” said Bloom.
For more information, visit http://dhdc21.wixsite.com/brews.