With lockdown restrictions slowly starting to ease across the country, the Independent Brewers Association has furiously been in planning mode to revise their events schedule for the year. It has meant a major reshuffle of timings, locations, and in some cases, going virtual. All good reasons to celebrate and to come together as an industry as we begin to recover from the devastating effects caused by the global pandemic though!
Good Beer Week
This week was supposed to see the 10th anniversary Good Beer Week celebrations kick-off. The team couldn’t let that milestone go by without some sort of isolation-inspired celebration so instead, the Good Beer Week Virtual Festival launched on Monday.
“We wanted to do something to commemorate the event, and all the venues who have been struggling since restrictions came into place. For us, Good Beer Week is every week. So why not celebrate it in a way that is safe, supports our venues, and brings together the community spirit that Good Beer Week is known for” explains Siobhan Kerin, Head of Events for the IBA.
The website will house online events, activities, and a very cool program for the Cryer Malt Virtual Trade Hub. We’ll also be sharing the memories we have created since the first Good Beer Week back in 2011.
BrewCon was originally scheduled for September and while we expect fewer restrictions then, the IBA felt it was too risky to go ahead as planned so the conference and trade expo has been moved to November, between 9-12 with further announcements to follow at the beginning of June once the schedule has been locked in.
With the date change also comes a change in scene as BrewCon moves to the Sunshine Coast. BrewCon2020 will be heading up to the Sunshine Coast Convention Centre, where the members can enjoy a little slice of paradise and a raft of fun and games.
The Indies Awards Ceremony will run in conjunction with BrewCon in November. There may be some changes to the judging process depending on restrictions however, this will have very little impact on breweries who enter. Further announcements for Indies entry information will be made in June.
Indie Beer Day
With the shuffle of the above events, Indie Beer Day has been brought forward to July 25. This was a great success last year in raising the profile of indie beer so with venues slowing starting to open across the country, and social distancing expected to stick around for a little longer, the IBA saw this campaign as another opportunity to promote indie beer and to share a universal ‘cheers’ to all the makers and consumers who have done it tough the last few months.
“We are really pleased to be able to make these announcements now, especially as people are starting to feel a little more positive about the road ahead. While we may have to do things a little differently this year, our aim is to bring everyone together, to have a beer, learn some stuff and to have some fun while we celebrate our recovery from what has been a really tough time”, said Peter Philip, Chair of the IBA and head honcho at Wayward