How very Oregon.
Fresh hops in the falling rain.
But worry not, you Hood River Hops Fest attendees, there will be plenty of tents to protect your Big Horse Strictly Rude 2 or that Double Mountain Killer Red.
When it all gets going today at noon, one of the more fittingly titled beers will be “If It’s Wet and Not Yours, Don’t Touch it,” a moist-hopped (ahem) IPA from Portland’s Breakside.
Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Mike Glover said extra tents will be installed for the 10th annual event, in a long central arrangement, in close proximity to the pouring areas, giving maximum coverage to beer tasters while relieving congestion around the taps themselves.
“There’s definitely a different footprint this year,” Glover said. “Much better coverage for everyone.
“Our goal was to eliminate the bottleneck of the lines in front of the beer.”
Hours are noon to 9 p.m. at the parking lot between Fifth and Sixth streets on Columbia.
Look for 66 ales — every one of them fresh-hopped — from 44 breweries from Oregon and Washington.
Ales from all six of Hood River’s breweries will be on tap, including Berliner No Weiss from Solera, Mosaic Belgian from pFriem, fresh hop Seizoen from Logsdon, and a pilsner from Full Sail.
Music starts at noon with The Poor Sports, Tess Barr Band from 3:30 to 5, Big City Wind down from 5:30 to 7, and Tony Smiley headlining from 7:30 to 9 p.m.
The event is all-ages; though those under 21 may not enter the beer service areas.
The music stage, food service and kids play areas as well as the entry will be the same as past years, and are all ages.
One major change this year is sales points for extra tasting tokens will be located inside the festival area, meaning tasters won’t have to go all the way back to the entry to get more tokens.
“We’re expecting that will speed things up,” Glover said. The Chamber expects the Hops Fest turnout to surpass the record 10,000 attendees in 2012, even in the rain.
There is no designated parking area for the event, but parking is free throughout Hood River all day Saturday.
General admission is $10 and includes a mug and four tokens.
Children 12 and under are free.
Admission is $4 for designated drivers and wine drinkers.
Naked Winery is the official festival winery.