By SHANNON WATKINS
The sixth annual BrewRidge music festival will be held this Saturday, rain or shine, from 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. outdoors at Mountain Lake Lodge in Pembroke. The event will feature local microbrew beer tasting and bluegrass music by area bands.
“It’s an annual fundraiser for the Mountain Lake Conservancy,” said Jess Coker, who serves as event director for the festival and the Mountain Lake Conservancy’s naturalist. The Conservancy is dedicated to conserving the 2,600 acres of privately-owned, forested land atop Salt Pond Mountain.
Microbew companies at the event include Alewerks Brewing Company, Bull & Bones Brewhaus and Grill, Devils Backbone Brewing Company, Jefferson Street Brewery, The River Company and Starr Hill. For nondrinkers or designated drivers there will also be root beer served by Bull & Bones and fermented kombucha tea by Buffalo Mountain Kombucha.
Food concessions will be sold by Mountain Lake Lodge’s own Harvest Restaurant. Prices will run from $2-$10 and include turkey legs, ribs, wings and vegetarian chili. The Stony Creek Tavern will also be open during the festival.
Tickets purchased in advance are $30 for a full tasting (10 four-ounce beer tickets), $20 for a mini tasting (five four-ounce beer tickets), or $10 for non-drinkers. A 12 ounce souvenir mug comes with the tasting tickets or can be purchased separately for $8. Drinkers will also be supplied with wristbands. Tickets purchased at the event are $5 above each price stated above.
Additional four-ounce tasting tickets can be purchased for $2 each. Despite the ease of accessibility to beer and ale, Coker notes, “We haven’t really encountered people going over their limit. We aren’t fostering that kind of consumption. We follow ABC rules.”
The bands performing at BrewRidge will be the Indian River String Band from 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., The Boatmen from 1:00 p.m. – 2:45 p.m., the Black Twig Pickers from 3 p.m. – 4:45 p.m., and the Jugbusters from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.
As always, the festival will be out in the open with only trees for natural shade. Coker encourages participants to bring sunhats, sunglasses and sunblock. No tents are allowed, but small ground shades appropriate for children are acceptable.
“We’re really just out here to get out in the fresh air,” said Coker. “We’re family friendly and we try to make this enjoyable for all ages. It’s definitely a smaller, more intimate vibe.”
Tickets for the BrewRidge Festival can be purchased at the website http://brewridgefestival.wordpress.com/. For more information, call Jess Coker at (540) 626-7121 ext. 422.