Meet the organizations behind some of your favorite Tampa Bay Beer Week events: the Tampa Bay Beer Week (TBBW) Inc. board, the Florida Brewers Guild (FBG), and Best Florida Beer (BFB). Every year we get questions about the various festivals and events that make up TBBW, so here is a spotlight on the organizations behind the main events of the opening weekend!
Tampa Bay Beer Week is a collaborative effort run by a volunteer board that consists of brewers, brewery owners, distributors, homebrewers, and independent beer enthusiasts. Our mission is to promote local, national, and international craft beer culture in the Tampa Bay area, and to celebrate and include the diverse craft beer producers, distributors, retailers, and beer enthusiasts who positively impact our community. The inaugural Tampa Bay Beer Week was established in 2012 and has since hosted thousands of events ranging from large scale festivals to beer tastings, beer dinners, and more. The success of TBBW has been a major factor in the continuing growth of the Tampa Bay area craft beer community. TBBW produces the Tampa Bay Ale Trail which is an incentive based beer passport program that features 77 local breweries. Tampa Bay Beer Week begins on the first Saturday of March and ends 9 days later. It has become the premier Beer Week destination in the Southeast. Tampa Bay Beer Week is organized and operated by Tampa Bay Beer Week Inc., a 501(c)(6) not-for-profit organization. TBBW will be hosting The Ultimate Brew festival on Friday March 4th to kick off the 2022 Tampa Bay Beer Week.
The TBBW board:
Executive Director, Chris Fairchild
Travis Kruger, Chair
Scott Newcomb, Internal Chair
Karla Rave, Secretary
Cole Berra, Treasurer
Non-designated board members: Elise Sweeney, Kevin Shanks, Josh Brown
The Florida Brewers Guild is the 501(c)(6) nonprofit trade association committed to preserving the rights and interests of all craft brewers throughout the state. Their mission is to educate the public about the brewing industry in Florida; promote networking and educational opportunities between brewers, consumers, suppliers, and government regulatory agencies; and continually promote free market access of the Florida brewing industry to the public. Each year, they work to put on a number of festivals around the state, an annual professional conference, and work directly with representatives on the state and federal level to pass brewery-friendly legislation. The Guild participates in, but does not own or operate, regional Beer Weeks and beer competitions. The Florida Brewers Guild will be hosting the FBG Festival on Saturday March 5th.
The purpose of Best Florida Beer is to aid in the development and promotion of both home and commercial Florida brewers, their craft beers and the community of brewing enthusiasts. Best Florida Beer incorporated in 2015 as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization after over a decade organizing the state-wide homebrew and professional competitions as well as hosting the Brewer’s Ball celebration. Since their incorporation they have made efforts to raise awareness of brewing techniques and principles through marketing, events, and social engagement. They have also added more sensory courses for brewers, equipment rentals, and a scholarship as well as hosting the regional NHC judging. Florida Brewers Guild membership is not required to participate, although it is encouraged. Best Florida Beer will be hosting Brewer’s Ball on Sunday March 6th.
We hope to see you at one or all of these featured Tampa Bay Beer Week festivals! Be sure to watch the official TBBW calendar for the most up-to-date event listings and our social media for more information as March approaches. Cheers to 10 years of Tampa Bay Beer Week!
– Elise Sweeney