As the viability of the beer festival remains undetermined, with big names like the Oregon Brewers Festival and the Holiday Ale Festival canceling or postponing, a large-scale event dedicated to drinking has been resurrected six years after its last appearance.
The Portland Spring Beer & Wine Fest—which lasted 23 years and was one of the longest-running in the state—will return this June, and for the first time be held outdoors.
Terrapin Events, best known for hosting runs, like Bridge to Brews and the Dirty Leprechaun obstacle course, has purchased the spring beverage festival from its founder, Steve Woolard, who retired after it last occurred in 2017. However, he kept the event’s assets with the hope that somebody would take it over.
It’s taken a few years, but Woolard appears to have found the right buyer. Aaron Montaglione, Terrapin’s owner, will add the Spring Beer & Wine Fest to the company’s portfolio, expanding its lineup of offerings beyond fun runs.
“For several years prior to the pandemic we had been looking to branch out and do more food, beer and music-based events,” Montaglione tells WW. “When I found out that the Spring Beer & Wine Festival was for sale, I reached out to Steve to discuss it. His main goal was to get it into the hands of someone he trusted could continue the tradition. I honestly don’t think we are going to quite live up to that this first year, since all event companies are still seriously feeling the pain of the pandemic, but we are going to slowly try to bring it back to its prominence as the best beer and wine festival in Oregon.”
The new iteration of the festival will take place June 2-3 at Washington Monroe Field next to Revolution Hall. The location is notable since the event was previously held indoors at the Portland Convention Center. You can expect more than 20 breweries to be pouring as well as dozens of wineries, distilleries, specialty drinks and food vendors. All ages are welcome to attend, and entry is $5 for anyone 12 years and older.
A cup, purchased online in advance, is $10. You’ll shell out five bucks more at the gate. Tasting tickets are $15 for 20 and $1 each day of.
For the second year, Terrapin is also hosting Portland BBQ & Brews in the same space as the Spring Beer & Wine Fest. The new event was actually planned prior to the pandemic, but scrapped twice once the health crisis worsened. You can get your fill of smoked meats (and vegan options) Aug. 18-20.