After seven years of hosting festivals, tap takeovers, beer dinners and educational events each September, L.A. Beer Week is moving to June for 2015. It's the first major overhaul to the weeklong celebration of all things L.A. beer since the year-old Los Angeles County Brewers Guild took over organizing duties in 2014.
The L.A. Brewers Beer Week Kickoff Festival — which showcases the 30 L.A. Brewers Guild members — will be held June 20, with the following eight days filled with more than 200 LABW events at bars, restaurants, breweries and retail shops.
Moving L.A. Beer Week to earlier in the year helps distance it from the Great American Beer Festival, the country's largest beer festival and competition (Sept. 24-26), and from the inaugural California Craft Beer Summit, which will be held in Sacramento Sept. 11-12.
"June is also a really great month in L.A. to hold an outdoor event," says Cyrena Nouzille, owner of Ladyface Ale Companie and an L.A. Beer Week events committee member. "It’s not too hot yet and people are in the mood for beer fest season."
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The 2015 LABW kickoff festival will be doubling last year's capacity and moving to Exposition Park, which is also the venue for the Hops and Hope Craft Beer Fest later this month. Expect more than 70 breweries from L.A., Orange County and beyond, along with cold-brew coffee, home-brewed sodas, educational panels, music and pub games.
"We really hoped we could find a park environment for our festival, and we happened upon the motherland of parks in L.A.," Nouzille says. "I think the variety of the experience we offer is going to be very unique as we focus turning Los Angeles into a genuine beer town."