Thirty-nine excellent craft breweries from around the region and across the country put forth a wide array of delicious craft beers on a beautiful Saturday afternoon. The unseasonably warm day brought many a smiling face out to the riverfront, to Abe & Jake's Landing, which once again proved to be an excellent venue for this event.
Now in its 4th year, the KCBE is still proving to be the hottest ticket in town -- selling out very quickly, and this time not just one session, but two. With such exponential growth, while maintaining its reputation for being well-organized and run, it's easy to call this year's Expo a complete success. The addition of a second session proved to be an excellent decision, as it not only allowed more people to attend, (disappointment at not getting a ticket being the number one complaint against the event in the past); it also spread the floor a bit, making it slightly less crowded and a bit more comfortable for attendees. The removal of the large brass sculptures and arches that once took up valuable floor space at Abe & Jake's helped as well.
In addition to great craft beer, attendees of the Expo were also treated to samples of international cheeses provided by HyVee, food from local restaurants, and the turntable wizardry of Lawrence's own, DJ Proof.
Many of the same breweries in attendance from previous years were back, attesting to the Expo's continued success; while newcomers from around the region brought an exciting new infusion of talent -- and demonstrated just how much craft beer has grown throughout region. With even more new breweries popping up in nearby Kansas City this year, next year's event should showcase even more new local talent.
A selection of photos taken at the event can be found at: http://brewliving.com/social/matt-bechtold/photos/photo?albumid=53