It’s easy for people to follow their favorite breweries on social media, but Mark Turic believes they’ll go the extra mile for a beloved drink.
The founder of the Beers of the Burgh Festival has partnered with the Pittsburgh Brewers Guild to create the Traveling Beer Market, a pop-up that will be available in a different outdoor location each month. Patrons 21 and older can purchase draft and to-go bottles and cans of beer from a rotating array of local breweries while they enjoy DJs and food trucks. There is no admission fee.
The first stop for the Traveling Beer Market is on May 28, 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Bay 41 (115 41st St.) in Lawrenceville. Brew Gentlemen, East End Brewing Co., Levity Brewing Co., Old Thunder Brewing Co., ShuBrew and The Leaning Cask will be featured.
Turic says he missed beer events and how they create community.
“We wanted to put together something that could safely happen in this environment and that would help the breweries,” he says. “We felt that this concept – while not exactly a beer festival – could be a fun little way to bring people together until bigger events can come back.”
The grassroots effort involved reaching out to neighborhoods across the region to see if they had large areas such as squares, vacant lots, or fields that could be donated to the series. The Lawrenceville Foundry donated the Bay 41 event space, which is located on the site of the original beers of the Burgh Festival, held on April 12, 2014.
Turic and his team have closed an unknown location for the June 25 beer market, which he calls the farmers’ market with beer instead of products. (If your looking for fresh fruits and vegetables, check out the NEXTpittsburgh Guide to Local Farmers’ Markets.)
The organizers will comply with all current Covid guidelines. Masks are required except when eating and drinking. Participants will receive a bracelet upon entry.
The owners of Big Rail Brewing in Grove City held similar beer market events on their large, wooded property last year. Even in winter, people gathered to support local foam makers.
Turic hopes the Pittsburghers will support this endeavor as he prepares for the next Beers of the Burgh Festival, which will take place on September 4th at the Carrie Blast Furnaces in Swissvale. The pandemic canceled the 2020 celebration, but tickets purchased for that event will be honored this year. Refunds will be issued up to two weeks prior to the event date and additional passes are available immediately.
“Our main concern right now is safety,” adds Turic. “While we look forward to the return of the Beers of the Burgh Festival, we want to be sure that attendees, brewers and staff feel comfortable and secure at the event.”