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Dining Out: Beerfest to celebrate 12 years of brewing

Who likes beer?

Everyone whose eyes just skimmed the first few words of this story probably said “yes,” or “heck yeah, beer!” If you are a beer lover, Zapp’s International Beerfest this Saturday, April 2 at the LSU Rural Life Museum from 3:30 p.m. until 6 p.m. might be right up your alley.

The festival will have more than 200 foreign and domestic beers, ales and home-brews available to taste. Are you thirsty yet? Food and non-alcoholic beverages will also be sold. General admission tickets for the event are $35. As a beer festival, you have to be 21 years of age and present a proper I.D. to enter this event to enjoy the consumption of alcohol legally. But don’t worry, Zapp’s did not forget about the exceptional humans who enjoy driving their drunken friends—Designated Driver tickets are available for $20, which includes one meal ticket.

Zapp’s, the company that is known for its potato chips, is putting on this event, which benefits the Rural Life Museum. The potato chip company has been successfully putting on a beer festival for 12 years. Snacks and beer do go perfectly together. Elizabeth McInnis, LSU Rural Life Museum’s marketing director, said Zapp’s is the sponsor of this event, and they work hard to make it successful year after year.

“We have a meeting after the festival and talk about what happened, what went wrong and what can make the event better,” McInnis said about preparation for Beerfest. She said as soon as one year is over, they start preparing for the next year. Normally, the same distributors and home breweries come back each year, but McInnis said they are always welcoming and inviting new participants, including new beer companies suggested by past festival attendees. McInnis said the people who put on this event know what they are doing by now because this is the 12th year. According to McInnis, they especially know how much ice to buy to make sure that each Beerfestgoer will be consuming cold beer.

There is a limit of how many people can attend the event, which is capped off at 2,500. But don’t fret — McInnis said the beer companies know and are ready to distribute to this amount of people. The beer never runs out.

“We want our patrons to have a nice experience in a controllable environment, it is really peaceful out here,” McInnis said.

Some of the home breweries include Highway 75 Brewing out of Plaquemine, Louisiana; Flying Heart Brewing out of Bossier City; and all the way from Mississippi is Crooked Letter Brewing. McInnis said there are always some surprises each year.

“Not only is [Beerfest] a fundraiser, but it also gives a new generation of people a chance to become aware about the museum,” McInnis said.

The Rural Life Museum has outdoor buildings that date back to 1870. The proceeds from Zapp’s International Beerfest help maintain these beautiful historic buildings.

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