Not done your holiday shopping? No worries, we’ve got your back with a gift guide of craft beer experiences that’ll make excellent stocking stuffers. All you need to do is click or tap to give the gift of beer.

craft beer experiences
Photo: Yasmine Hardcastle

As of this post going live, it’s seven days until Christmas. This statement either makes you do a happy dance or wince. Maybe the latter if you haven’t finished (or started) your festive shopping. Or maybe missed an online shipping deadline. Perhaps because the idea of braving a mall gives you some anxiety. But I’m here to tell you it’s okay, and that these four words can save your holiday bacon: give craft beer experiences.

First, let’s talk about four advantages of giving craft beer experiences as Christmas gifts:

  1. No wrapping necessary—be green for the holidays!
  2. You don’t need to leave your house to buy them. (Another eco-friendly win.)
  3. No stressful mall shopping or shipping times.
  4. The delighted look on (insert giftee name)’s face when they see you’ve bought them a ticket to an incredible beer event will be priceless.

2020 will be an amazing year for craft beer festivals and events in BC. Favourites are coming back and there are a couple newbies to check out. So grab today’s advent beer and get ready to get the craft beer lovers in your life tickets to an epic beer event. (That you will, naturally, be attending with them.)

Weathered Beer Celebration (Jan 25-26)

Weathered Beer Celebration returns January 25 -26, 2020 at Heritage Hall in Vancouver, BC. Weathered is a curated craft beer tasting and brewery art event, celebrating stouts, barleywine, hazy hops, wild ales, sours and lambic. Pouring will be some of the most rare, expensive, and hard to get beers from around the world. It is a bottle share more than it is a festival. It’s a beer tasting, a beer bar, and an art gallery all merged into one. Tickets include all your tastings (while drinking responsibly) and you can have a small 1-4oz sample from a choice of over 125 beers from 50+ breweries. Click here for more info and to purchase tickets.

Craft Beer Experiences

Island Beer & Spirits Festival (Feb 16)

The Strathcona welcomes the return of its annual Island Beer & Spirits Festival on Sunday, February 16. Tickets to this popular event include two (2) 4oz beer tasters or 1/2oz spirit tasters and one (1) food ticket. Attendees can expect a roster of some of the best the Island has to offer, showcasing new and exciting products that will be complemented by classic pub fare from the Strathcona kitchen. Click here for more info and to purchase tickets.

Craft Beer Experiences
Photo: Victoria Beer Week

Victoria Beer Week (March 6-14)

Victoria Beer Week returns March 6-14, 2020, showcasing BC craft breweries in unique event settings. With a focus on education and diverse craft beer selection, VBW 2020 will feature 50+ BC craft breweries at venues throughout the city. Whether you’re an aspiring Cicerone, or simply want to celebrate the province’s bounty of craft beer, Victoria Beer Week has an experience brewing just for you. Click here for more info and to get tickets to the kickoff and other festival events.

Victoria Beer Society Membership

With a focus on quality over quantity, the is a membership-driven community of like-minded individuals who share a common passion for BC craft beer. Perfect for that family member or friend who never stops talking about how much they love craft beer, or as workplace secret Santa gift for that coworker who insists you try the newest Berliner Weisse from their favourite BC craft brewery. For more info and to purchase a membership, click here.

Gnarly Barley Brew Festival  (March 14)

The Gnarly Barley Brew Festival kicks off its first annual event in Abbotsford on March 14 at the Abbotsford Centre. For its first year, the festival will feature breweries from across the Fraser Valley plus live music and entertainment to run throughout the evening. For more info and to purchase tickets, visit www.gnarlybarleybrewfestival.ca.

 

craft beer experiences

Okanagan Fest of Ale (April 17-18)

The Okanagan Fest of Ale has been bringing together craft beer lovers and craft brewers to celebrate the almighty ale since 1996. Every April, Penticton is host to one of the largest and longest running annual beer festivals in the Pacific Northwest. This two-day event features great entertainment, fabulous food and the opportunity to sample a diverse array of quality crafted beverages. Operating as a non-profit society, organizers are committed to support and promote the growing world of quality brewery products, local tourism and local charitable organizations. Since its inception, over $700,000 in net proceeds has been gifted back to qualifying registered charities. Click here for more info and to purchase tickets.

Great Okanagan Beer Festival (May 6-10)

 The Great Okanagan Beer Festival is a 5-day celebration, offering festival and craft beer lovers a mix of amazing programming at local bars and pubs. Saturday will showcase the cannot miss Main Event at Waterfront Park, where over 60 craft breweries will come together to pour over 120 beers and ciders for 3,500+ festival-goers. Nestled on the beautiful beaches of Okanagan Lake in the heart of downtown Kelowna, the festival will host 3500+ festival-goers raising a glass to the best craft beers and ciders that BC has to offer. And a few out of province brews joining the fun! Click here for more info and to purchase tickets.

craft beer experiences
Photo: VCBW

Vancouver Craft Beer Week (May 29-June 7)

Vancouver Craft Beer Week is Canada’s biggest celebration of craft beer & craft beer culture. This year, over a week of events across greater Vancouver will cap off with the VCBW Festival at its new False Creek location. There’ll be something for everyone to enjoy!  The 11th annual VCBW Festival features 75+ breweries and cideries, live entertainment, interactive art, food trucks, games and so much more. For more info and to purchase tickets, click here.

craft beer experiences
Photo: Craft Beer and Wilderness

Craft Beer and Wilderness Retreat (June 6-10)

Craft Beer and Wilderness is a luxury foodie and beer retreat on the remote wild West Coast of Vancouver Island. This will be a celebration of beer for the art form it has always been. Brew beer with the head brewers from Strange Fellows Brewing and Steamworks Brewing Co. and enjoy gourmet food and beer pairings, tap-side beer chats, and formal educational beer seminars. This is most definitely a treat for any craft beer lover and would make an excellent couple’s getaway. Click here for more info and to book this incredible experience.

craft beer experiences
Photo: Squamish Beer Festival

Squamish Beer Festival (July 4)

The Squamish Beer Festival, is an annual half-day event where 55+ breweries and cideries and 2000+ beer lovers will come together to celebrate their passion for great beer and mountain culture. Nestled in the heart of Sea to Sky Country and right in the heart of downtown Squamish, there will be food trucks, games, axe-throwing, music and more. Get a group together and bring friends to the fest, or meet new ones! Get more info and purchase tickets here.

Clover Valley

Clover Valley Beer Festival (August 8)

You won’t want to miss the 2020 Clover Valley Beer Festival! Clover Valley Beer Festival presented by The Property Twins is returning to the Bill Reid Millennium Amphitheatre on Saturday, August 8. This year’s event will feature 40+ breweries, 80+ brews and ciders, live music, food trucks, and guaranteed good times. Partial proceeds go towards Twins Cancer Fundraising. More info and tickets can be found here.

Whistler Village Beer Fest (Sep 19-20)

Whistler Village Beer Festival, will return in 2020 with 7-days of beer-fuelled fun from September 14-20. Signature events such as Craft Cultures and Master Crafters will be returning with new fun themes and other events such as Tap Takeovers, food and beer pairings and more. The Main Event will be on September 19 and 20 at Whistler Olympic Plaza and feature 60 breweries with over 120 beers and ciders. For more info and to purchase tickets, click here.

Let the BC Ale Trail be your gift guide to giving experiences this Christmas. Happy shopping!

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