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August 28, 2013

Traverse City Beer Week planned for November 8-15

TRAVERSE CITY — The Traverse City craft beer scene remains red hot, as evidenced by the announcement of a new craft beer week scheduled for Traverse City in the fall.

Kalamazoo-based distributor Imperial Beverage will organize Traverse City Beer Week from Nov. 8 through 15. It will feature multiple events at area breweries, restaurants and retailers. Participants will get to meet brewers, sample the latest craft beers and learn how to home brew.

“We consider Traverse City a hub for craft beer,” said Anne Drummond, a marketing and public relations director for Imperial Beverage. “Traverse City was a very obvious choice for us.”

Imperial Beverage also organizes Kalamazoo Beer Week, which Drummond said has grown significantly since its 2011 inception. That event’s success led the company to look at expanding its beer week into other hot craft beer markets.

“We want cash registers to ring,” said Drummond. “We don’t do it in a third-party location. We do it in restaurants, breweries and retail locations.”

The event is co-sponsored by the Traverse City Convention & Visitors Bureau. Mike Norton, spokesman for the Visitors Bureau, said the event will be valuable to Traverse City in part because it’s scheduled for November, lengthening the city’s tourism appeal after the weather turns chilly.

“It’s part of our ongoing work to spread out the number and types of events we have throughout the year so we don’t have a cluster events taking place at pretty much the same time,” Norton said. “It’s much better for us, the community and tourism industry for there to be a number of events going on at all times of the year.”

Traverse City’s beer scene continues to generate attention, much along the lines of the region’s reputation as a hub for fine wines and restaurants. Draft Magazine named Traverse City one of three Emerging Beer Towns. The Travel Channel named Traverse City one of seven top beer destinations in North America.

“Doing well is a vast understatement — it’s exploding,” said Leif Kolt, events and branding coordinator for Right Brain Brewery. “If it involves Traverse City and beer, we want to participate.”

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