Sunday, March 6, 2011

Beer fests, figuratively speaking

Atlantic City's annual beer festival is less than a month off, and this past week, the Garden State Craft Brewers Guild announced the date for its annual June gathering aboard the USS New Jersey battleship museum at the Camden waterfront.

Beer festivals have become ubiquitous across New Jersey, one for almost every weekend of the year, it seems.

Chris Walsh from River Horse Brewing may have said it best when he joked awhile back, "They're happening on the half hour now."

But whatever the case, festivals are something of a numbers game, especially the behind-the-scene kind that support the attendance figures. (Yeah, yeah, the most important number is the net sum from ticket sales, plus whatever spinoff dollars that make their way into the local economies, i.e. site rental, parking, hired security and concessions.)

So while at the fifth annual Philly Craft Beer Festival on Saturday we asked its promoter, Andy Calimano of Starfish Junction Productions (that's Andy in the orange shirt in the photo at above left), to run through some of those figures.

Here are some numbers:

Beer – More than 5,425 gallons of kegged beer, plus cases of bottled and canned beer.

(Starfish's promotional literature notes 100 beers from 50 breweries, but those round numbers always seem to be the case.)

Plastic sampler cups: 6,000

Ice: 3.6 tons

Volunteers: More than 150.

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