Illinois Craft Beer Week kicks off this Friday and if you happen to be a craft beer connoisseur, there are plenty of activities planned for those who enjoy themselves a good brew.
Here is a day-by-day breakdown of what’s happening across Illinois:
Friday, May 19
The Summer Drink Passport makes its return after a several years-long hiatus.
According to the Illinois Craft Brewers Guild (ICBG), the passport is a physical booklet where craft beer enthusiasts can document their summer craft beer adventures.
Those interested can snag a passport from participating breweries starting May 19, and ask bartenders at each establishment along the way for a ‘Visa Sticker’ to add to your passport.
Those who visit 50 or more participating breweries from May 19 to Aug. 19 are eligible to enter a drawing for a gift card to the passport brewery of their choice. To enter, participants must fill out the authorization form on the final page of their passport, have it verified by a brewery employee, and submit it to the Illinois Craft Brewers Guild by Aug. 19.
Click here for a list of participating breweries.
Saturday, May 20
This year, the ICBG partnered with Will County Habitat for Humanity to bring a ‘Day of Giving’ celebration on Saturday at the Will County Beer and Bourbon Festival, where over 100 breweries will be pouring beer all proceeds will support local veteran build programs.
A second Day of Giving event being held is the Brewers Triangle Block Party, featuring Maplewood Brewery, Ravinia Brewing Company and Metropolitan Brewing, from 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. One dollar from every beer purchased that day at any of the three breweries will be donated to Habitat for Humanity Chicago.
Sunday, May 21
‘Small Brewery Sunday’ takes place on May 21.
An annual tradition according to the ICBG, Small Brewery Sunday is a day the guild uses to promote craft beer enthusiasts to visit their local breweries for a pint (or two) and retail shops to restock on their favorite brews.
Monday, May 22
Monday is ‘Pint Day.’
Specifically, the ICBG is holding a Pint Day Fundraiser where patrons at participating breweries can purchase a 16-ounce pint glass with a special design highlighting Illinois craft breweries. According to the ICBG, a portion of the proceeds goes toward their mission of “education, promotion, and advocacy.”
Here’s a list of breweries participating in ‘Pint Day:’
- Alarmist Brewing
- Alter Brewing Company
- Black & Gray Brewing Co.
- Black Horizon Brewing Company
- Black Lung
- Brickstone Brewery
- Brother Chimp Brewing
- Bubblehouse Brewing Co
- Byers Brewing Company
- Church Street
- Door 4 Brewing
- Emancipation Brewing Co.
- Energy City Brewing
- Evil Horse Brewing Company
- Exit Strategy Brewing Company
- Flapjack Brewery
- Flipside Brewing
- Flossmoor Station Brewing Co.
- Forgottonia Brewing
- Goose Island Beer Co.
- Great Central
- Haymarket Beer Co
- Hop Butcher for the World
- Ike & Oak Brewing Co.
- Illuminated Brew Works
- Imperial Oak
- Keg Grove Brewing Company
- Metal Monkey Brewing
- Mickey Finn’s Brewery
- Millpond Brewing
- Miskatonic Brewing Company
- Noon Whistle
- Obscurity Brewing
- Old Herald Brewery & Distillery
- Penrose Brewing Company
- Pilot Project Brewing
- Prairie Street Brewing
- Reserve Artisan Ales
- Revolution Brewing
- Riverlands Brewing Company
- Roaring Table Brewing
- Rt66 Old School Brewing
- Sew Hop’d Brewery
- Side Lot
- Skeleton Key Brewery
- Sketchbook brewing co
- Temperance Beer Co.
- Trail’s Edge
- Twisted Hippo
- Urban Forest Craft Brewing
- Werk Force
- White Oak Brewing
- Will County Brewing Company
Tuesday, May 23
Tuesday is a day dedicated to the members of the ICBG’s ImBIBE (I’m a Big Illinois Beer Enthusiast) Program.
The ICBG will highlight members of ImBIBE, as well as offer exclusive access to presale tickets to events, discounts, member-only events, branded gear, and more.
Wednesday, May 24
Wednesday will feature a ‘Patio Parties’ spotlight of breweries around the state of Illinois.
One such planned patio party will take place at Sketchbook Skokie, featuring pizza and trivia, from 5:30 – 9 p.m.
Those interested in other patio party opportunities can follow along on the ICBG’s Instagram page for stories and posts highlighting breweries hosting patio parties and other special events.
Alongside patio parties, Histrionic Brewlab will be hosting a fundraiser at their Ashland location benefitting Camp One Step, a non-profit organization that helps provide experiences for kids who are battling cancer.
10 cents for every ounce of beer poured across all Histrionic Brewlab locations will be donated toward Camp One Step on Wednesday, May 24.
Thursday, May 25
Thursday is dedicated to the ICBG’s ‘Day of Action,’ according to the guild.
The center of this year’s day of action will be focused on modernizing Illinois liquor laws from the 1930’s that make it harder for modern breweries to open, operate and grow, the guild said.
Actions planned include advocacy through the Illinois General Assembly, as well as launching a social media campaign pushing for legislative change.
You can read more about the bills online by clicking here.
If you’re interested in getting involved in person, here’s a list of ICBG’s breweries where you can visit and learn more.
- Haymarket (West Loop)
- Old Irving Brewing (North Side)
- Twisted Hippo (formerly Albany Park, now West Loop)
- Church Street (Itasca)
- Begyle Brewing (Ravenswood)
- Roaring Table (Lake Zurich).
Friday, May 26
The ICBG’s annual ‘Beer Under Glass‘ Festival at Chicago’s Union Station serves as the closing event for Illinois Craft Beer Week.
120-plus breweries will be in attendance with pours on tap for craft beer enthusiasts at the event, which represents the largest gathering of craft breweries in the state of Illinois each year.