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Kona Brewers Festival on tap March 14


The crowd enjoys the atmosphere at Kona Brewers Festival 2008. (Photo courtesy

The crowd enjoys the atmosphere at Kona Brewers Festival 2008. (Photo courtesy


The 14th annual Kona Brewers Festival surfs onto the shore Saturday, March 14, tapping up more than 60 types of ales and lagers, served alongside island-style cuisine from 25 Hawaii chefs. 

The sell-out event features craft beer, tantalizing food, live music and entertainment outdoors 2:30-6:30 p.m. on the shore of Kailua Bay at King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel. 

The Kona Brewers Festival is a culminating event of a multi-day celebration that includes a beer and food pairing dinner Thursday, March 12 at the Keauhou Beach Resort; a charity golf tournament  Friday, March 13 at Big Island Country Club; and a Walk/Run for Hops race Saturday morning, March 14. brewersfestlogo

Kona Brewers Festival – The Main Event, Saturday, March 14

At the signature event, each of 35 breweries from Hawaii and the mainland United States will tap up two types of beer, ranging in style, flavor and color to accommodate every beer palate. 

Chefs from 25 of Hawaii’s top restaurants will serve sweet and savory tastes of gourmet food, including island-style fish, barbecue, fresh local produce and a selection of desserts. A hula and oli (chant) will kick off the event. Live music throughout the day. 

The annual Trash Fashion Show, designed to raise awareness of the importance of recycling, will show off attire made entirely from recycled material such as cardboard, grocery bags and tires. 

Tickets to the Kona Brewers Festival Main Event are available in advance only. Cost is $50 and includes a commemorative event mug, eight four-ounce brew tasting coupons, unlimited samplings of gourmet cuisine and an afternoon of entertainment. Tickets are available for purchase online at ($5 fee). 

A special beer and food pairing dinner, “The Brewers’ Paina,” will kick off the weekend of craft beer tasting 6-9 p.m., Thursday, March 12, hosted by the Keauhou Beach Resort. Each course of the outdoor feast will be expertly paired with a different Kona Brewing Company beer, and many of the dishes will incorporate beer as an ingredient. Tickets are $45.  

Kona Brewers Fest Golf Open, Friday, March 13

The third annual Kona Brewers Fest Golf Open will tee off Friday, March 13, with a shotgun start at 9 a.m. at Big Island Country Club. Golfers of all levels are welcome to play at this four-person scramble using the Peoria scoring system, a popular format for one-day friendly tournaments because it evens the competition. The event benefits Hawaii Montessori School at Kona. 

Cost for 18 holes of golf is $150 and includes greens fees and cart, welcome bag, continental breakfast, box lunch and awards ceremony with pupus. 

Preregister on the festival Web site, For information, to sponsor or volunteer, call Dianna Lally, 756-0788 or email 

Run for the Hops 5K / 10K, Saturday, March 14

The day of beer tasting will get off to a running start at the “Run for the Hops” 5K / 10K run/ walk 7:30 a.m. on Saturday, March 14. Presented by Bike Works and benefiting Peoples Advocacy for Trails Hawaii (PATH), the run will begin and end at Kona Brewing Company. Entry fee is $25 and includes a commemorative T-shirt, refreshments, award ceremony and beer tasting. 

For registration information go to, call 329-9718 or e-mail 

Kona Brewers Festival Homebrew Competition

Also planned in conjunction with festival events is the Kona Brewers Festival Homebrew Competition, a local competition sanctioned by the American Homebrewers Association. Judges evaluate the entries using the AHA National Style Guidelines for 28 different styles of beers, meads and ciders. 

For information, visit 


The festival is a celebration of more than a decade of brewing excellence in Hawaii. Since its inception, the festival’s mission has been to promote the craft brewing revolution in Hawaii and encourage professional brewers and chefs to work together and have a positive economic, educational and environmental effect on our Big Island community.

The event debuted in 1996 to celebrate the beginning of Kona Brewing Company, and to foster Hawaii’s increasing interest in the craft brewing industry, and to promote recycling. The annual success of the Kona Brewers Festival is due to the outstanding support from more than 200 volunteers, sponsors, local restaurants, and breweries from all over the world.

The event raises funds for environmental, educational and cultural organizations. Over the years the Kona Brewers Festival has become one of Kailua-Kona’s premier events and has raised more than $313,000 for Big Island beneficiaries.

For information on any of the festival events, visit or call 808-331-3033.

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