Get hyped, the Ballarat Beer Festival returns

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Get hyped, the Ballarat Beer Festival returns

Live music at Ballarat Beer Festival. By Carbie Warbie

A dog-friendly weekend of local beers, bites, and blues returns to Ballarat.

It’s almost impossible to pass up a beer festival at the best of times, but when we’ve copped a whole lot of cancelled events and there’s one only an hour’s drive away from you – offering more than 150 craft beers and ciders – attendance is essential.

That’s right beer lovers, the Ballarat Beer Festival has confirmed it is back for 2022 and they’ve revealed just how it’s going to look for the many keen punters keen to quench their thirst.

Returning for its 11th year (which is worthy of a beer itself), The Ballarat Beer Festival will return to the beautiful Northern Gardens on Saturday, February 19, turning the space into a craft beer lover’s paradise. Each year, the family-friendly festival is filled with almost 40 of Australia’s leading craft beer brewers, giving the crowds – and the craft beer enthusiasts – the chance to sample a tonne of delicious (and some quite adventurous) craft beers and ciders.

That will all be the same, however much like last year’s event, this year will see the event spilt into two sessions across the day at the North Gardens, with plenty of space to relax on a picnic rug under the shady lakeside grounds – all socially distanced. As a way of forging ahead, but still adhering to COVID-guidelines, the first session will run from 12pm to 4pm, while the second session will run from 5pm to 9pm. However, if you’re the type that likes to make a day of it, there are all-day passes available.

Tickets are on sale now for $35, which includes festival entry, an official tasting glass, a lanyard to hold your beer and access to all the events and beers.

As for what beers you can expect, you’ll find brews from well-known favourites like Blackman’s Brewery, Bright Brewery, Bad Shepherd Brewing Co, Bandolier Brewing, BentSpoke Brewing Co, Cheeky Rascal Cider, Colonial Brewing Co, Coopers  Brewery Australia, Fury and Son, Hawkers  Beer, KAIJU! Beer, Moon Dog Brewing, Noodledoof, Paper Scissors Rock  Brew Co, Urban Alley Brewery, Young Henrys and more. 

Mixed in with many of Australia’s finest large, small and emerging independent breweries, you’ll also find a dozen food stalls all serving up global culinary delights you can match with your favourite brews, as well as a pretty strong lineup of live music headlined by Australian music legend Russell Morris, fine regional wineries on site with wines and wine cocktails, free seminars for budding beer enthusiasts, trivia games, blind tastings and the popular brewer’s sack race.

Oh, and did we mention it’s dog friendly?

And for those who love to keep the good times rolling, the Ballarat Beer Festival is followed up on  the next day by the inaugural Funk’N’Fest music festival, an R’n’B and Soul suffused day offering the  best soul, blues and R’n’B Victoria has to offer, making it the perfect weekend for a trip to Ballarat.

“We’re thrilled to be able to bring the festival back for its eleventh year,” says festival operator Ric Dexter.

“Each year we’ve come back stronger, and we take a lot of pride in bringing together this  great celebration of food, beer, wine and music.”

Don’t have to tell us twice: The Ballarat Beer Festival is looking like the best way to spend a Saturday this summer.

Event organisers are confident they can provide a fun and safe day for festival-goers whilst adhering to Covid-19 guidelines. The Victorian Government has stipulated that only fully vaccinated patrons will be admitted. Evidence must be provided on check in.

You can purchase tickets here