BEER O’CLOCK: Mildura Beer Festival co-founders Ian Burrows, right, and Lee Garraway ahead of the inaugural event this weekend.

By MADISON EASTMOND

PROMISING to be a day for the whole family to enjoy, the Mildura Beer Festival will be making its debut tomorrow to showcase some of the best craft beer brewers, cideries and wineries Australia has to offer.

Set to be held from 11am to 7pm at Sandilong Park, the day will feature brews from across the country, allowing Sunraysia residents to sample some beverages for the first time. 

The festival is the work of co-founders Ian Burrows and Lee Garraway, and was an idea that came to the two friends after they attended similar events in the city.

Ultimately, they thought the concept would make for a good day out!

“This is the first event we have done, but we have had a lot of fun pulling it together and hope the local community have a great time,” Ian said. 

“It’s been a lot of work, but we have had so many people lend a helping hand. It’s been fantastic!

“It’s hard to know what to expect in numbers really, but our pre-sale tickets are at around 700 – we’re hoping we can get 1000 to 15,000 on the day!

“The reception we have gained has been pretty positive. During the past few months we have been contacting brewers and local businesses, hoping to get as many people as we can involved.

“Currently we have nine brewers, nine cideries and spirit makers, and two wineries – some are from Melbourne and South Australia, but we are also featuring some local businesses like the Mildura Brewery, The Corporate Moose, Fossey’s Gin, Sunraysia Cellar Door and Varden Estate (The D’Vine Shed).”

Wanting to create a family-friendly environment, Ian said the day will be “jam-packed with fun activities that everyone can take part in.”

“There will be live entertainment, Wacky Wear Fashions on the Field, pig races, a footy kicking competition, a mechanical bull riding challenge, kids entertainment and face painting, along with picnic areas – so bring a blanket!” he said. 

“We will also have seven food trucks, including S+T Fire and Food, The Happy Mexican, 48 Flavours, Coffee and Cookies, Kabab King, Two Chef’s Catering Mildura and Enjoy Catering.

“Tickets are available online or at the gate, but the event will be cashless, meaning that electronic wristbands will be used to make purchases,” he said, 

“The benefit of this is speedy service and accuracy across the board, there will be a ‘currency tent’ at the festival to top up your wristbands – which can be paid for with a credit/debit card or cash.

“Currency can be pre-purchased, along with tickets from our ticketing partner Eventbrite, and any currency not used can be redeemed after the festival through a link on our website.

“There will also be a free courtesy bus available to and from the festival – see our Facebook page for details.”

For more information, or to purchase tickets, visit www.mildurabeerfest.com or like ‘Mildura Beerfest’ on Facebook.