The Rotary Club has had success with its annual Wine Festival, and is now trying to duplicate that success with beer.
It has an Oktoberfest planned for Nov. 4.
“I think it’s been an idea that’s been tossed around in Rotary for a while having some sort of a beer event,” said Tyler Rea, president of the Rotary Club of Hay River Sunrise. “Everyone is familiar with the Wine Festival in town it seems like, but we wanted to have something to appeal to the beer drinkers in town, as well.”
The concept is similar. The Rotary Club will bring in special orders of beer not available in Hay River for people to try.
“There’s going to be 20 or 22 different types of beer and then there’s going to be samplers of those,” said Rea.
And like at the Wine Festival, there are going to be rating cards at Oktoberfest that people can fill out while they’re trying the beers.
“And whatever gets rated the highest at the end of night can be brought into the Liquor Store,” said Rea.
Most of the beer will come from smaller breweries, many from Western Canada and some from overseas.
Rhiannon Kuzmin, a member of the Rotary Club, said it will be nice to show people what other kinds of beer are out there.
Kuzmin noted that one of the beers will be Hofbrau, which is served at the Munich Oktoberfest.
“But then we also have a lot of Canadian beer, which is nice,” she said. “There’s some ciders. Kind of a little bit of everything.”
She noted the brands include Troubled Monk from Red Deer, Alta., Liefmans from Belgium and Grizzly Paw from B.C.
“There’s definitely a nice focus on Canadian beers, but also the global ones, as well,” she said.
Kuzmin noted that Oktoberfest is more than just a beer festival.
“Traditionally, it’s supposed to be a celebration of culture, a celebration of people, getting people together, bringing the community together, which is definitely something that we’re trying to do here,” she said.
Rea noted Oktoberfest will be held at the Legion.
“We’re going to have decorations that are Oktoberfest-themed and food that’s Oktoberfest-themed,” he said.
Plus, he noted there will be live music from The Sociables.
Rea credited some new members of the Rotary Club for finally making Oktoberfest a reality, especially Stephanie Mackisoc.
The club president noted 160 tickets are being sold for the event.
The proceeds will be used to fund Rotary projects in the community, especially Dragons’ Den in November.
That’s a competition in which schoolchildren present business ideas to a panel made up of local businesspeople.