Kansas City is a craft beer destination—and home to more than a dozen craft beer festivals that begin in spring and continue through early winter. The city boasts a multitude of local breweries and taprooms, as well as a strong network of homebrewers that welcome craft brewers and the public alike to gather for weekend events.

Here are some of the most notable beer festivals in KC:

Kegs and Eggs

April 8 | Website

Thousands of Easter Eggs are hidden around the Kansas City Renaissance Festival grounds in Bonner Springs as part of a massive egg hunt. Each egg contains tickets to be redeemed for prizes, while others contain money up to $100. The festival includes craft beer tastings, live music, and food trucks.

Spring Fling Homebrew Festival

April 8 | Website

Launched in spring 2017, this new annual festival is based in North Kansas City. The event, presented by Colony Handcrafted Ales, is a community-based fundraiser for Rotary International's NKC club. The festival gathers more than 30 home brewers to share their distinctive beers in a wide range of styles and flavors found nowhere else. Food trucks and vendors add to the festive gathering.

Parkville Microbrew Festival

April 29 | Website

For the past 14 years, this event, located in Parkville, Missouri, has been the premier spring craft beer festival. The event draws hundreds of craft beer drinkers to sample brews and cider from local, regional and national breweries and homebrewers. Based in English Landing Park by the Missouri River, the festival has a scenic open air backdrop with live music, food trucks and vendors. Shop and dine in nearby historic downtown Parkville before and after the event.

Tour de Bier

May 14 | Website

The annual Tour de Bier is a bicycle tour of Kansas City’s modern breweries, historic brewery landmarks and related points of interest pre- and post-Prohibition. Along the way, riders learn about the link between beer and baseball, urban legends and “the Wettest Block in the World.” The self-guided tour includes lunch and beer at the after-party.

Brew-B-Que

May 20 | Website

Fill your belly with Kansas City barbecue from 10 local purveyors, including Jazzy B's food truck, Barb Wire BBQ and Greg Co BBQ. Sample more than 100 craft beers from 40-plus local and regional craft breweries, listen to live music and participate in fun competitions, all held on the grounds of the Kansas City Renaissance Festival in Bonner Springs.

June

Get Ripped Brew Fest

June 3 | Website

This annual beer festival commemorates the anniversary of Big Rip Brewing Company, based in North Kansas City. The brewery and taproom blocks off its parking lot, sets up a tent and welcomes select local breweries and distilleries at this limited-capacity event. Besides beer and spirits, stay for live music, a weiner dog race, yard games and, well, fellowship as summer gets underway at this low-key yet fun fest. 

Boulevardia

June 16-17 | Website

This huge street festival is held on Father’s Day weekend in the historic West Bottoms Stockyard District. Sponsored by Boulevard Brewing Co., the two-day event combines craft beer and a full slate of local and national music acts, including George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic, Guster, The Grisly Hand, Local Natives, Hembree and Katy Guillen & The Girls. Spend time at the Makers Market, Family Fair, eco-friendly booths, Food Truck Alley and much more.

KC Nanobrew Festival

June 24 | Website

Held along the Missouri River in Berkley Riverfront Park, the 8th annual KC Nanobrew Fest is dedicated to local homebrewers. The outdoor setting offers plenty of grass, fresh air and sunshine to enjoy beer. Admission includes a full-size souvenir glass, a $5 food voucher, and entertainment while brewers offer attendees unlimited tastings of their beer until the taps run dry. Last year's festival featured more than 200 homebrewed beers, plus food vendors, local breweries and beer-related vendors. 

Westport Beer Festival

June 24 | Website

Beer KC (McCoy’s Public House, Beer Kitchen) and Sporting KC collaborate to host this street festival in the heart of Westport, a historic district known for its dining, shopping, and entertainment. Held in front of McCoy’s, the festival is a benefit for AIDS Walk Kansas City. Three-dozen breweries offer beer samples with food available from street vendors and neighboring restaurants. 

August

UNICO Microbrew Festival

Date TBA | Website

Sponsored by UNICO, Kansas City’s Italian-American service organization, the festival features more than 50 microbrews at Zona Rosa, the shopping/dining district in KC's Northland. Admission includes a commemorative sample glass, beer samples and live music. All proceeds benefit the local Kansas City UNICO Chapter.

September


Image via Facebook.com/KCBeerFest

KC Beer Fest

September 9 | Website

Based in the Power & Light District in the KC Live! Block, this fall festival (presented by Flying Saucer) features more than 200 hand-picked craft beers from around the world, rare keg tappings, live music, gourmet food vendors and trucks, lawn games and more. The festival partners with a local charitable organization each year to raise awareness and funds for their cause, generating more than $16,000 for Kansas City charities since 2013.

Festival of the Lost Township

September 17 | Website

Held in Raytown near Crane Brewing Company, Brewtopia and Festival of the Lost Township partner on this annual event to feature a varied collection of KC, regional and national brewers both commercial and homebrewers. The event includes food trucks and vendors in an outdoor setting, usually a bit cooler in temperature than summer festivals. Proceeds from the festival benefit the Raytown Three Trails Kiwanis.

October

Oktoberfest at KC Bier Company

Date TBA | Website

Kansas City's only brewery dedicated to producing German-inspired lagers, ales and other styles naturally hosts a family-friendly annual fall Oktoberfest in the Waldo neighborhood. Last year's two-day fest included live music, Bavarian barrel tapping of the Festbier, dance performances, a stein-holding competition, Lederhosen & Dirndl competition and more in the Fest Hall and outdoor biergarten.

November

Strong Ale Fest

Date TBA | Website

Beer KC hosts this chilly outdoor celebration of brews that bills itself as “an ode to bold ales.” The afternoon event features more than 35 craft breweries from around the country and abroad. Sample seasonal and rare stouts, quadrupels, barleywine and other robust beers, most over 7 percent ABV. Food and cigars are also available for purchase at the event.

December

Arts and Crafts Festival

Date TBA | Website

This three-day festival combines an indie film fest, live music performances, arts/maker vendors and craft breweries into a winter extravaganza. A great excuse to head out of the house, try seasonal, year-round and limited-release beers from a wide array of breweries. Low-key and fun with a community atmosphere, the festival also offers discussion panels on film, special screenings and other highlights. 

Freelance writer Pete Dulin writes about food, craft beer, business and the best of Kansas City for area publications. His books, KC Ale Trail and Last Bite: 100 Recipes from Kansas City’s Best Chefs and Cooks, are available at petedulin.com, where Pete also documents his culinary travel adventures.

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