“We will move away from the lederhosen and oompah music and focus on the amazing beer and breweries in this fast growing craft beer region,” the Washington Beer Commission site says. (Many links on the site are still pointing to the old Oktoberfest page.)
This will be the fourth year for the Spokane festival, which is one of six tasting events organized by the Washington Beer Commission each year to promote the state’s craft breweries, and the only one on this side of the state.
The festival is scheduled for Sept. 27-28 this year. Tickets are $15 in advance or $20 at the door, and the cost includes a tasting cup and five 5-oz. samples. (Designated driver admission is $5.)
The participating breweries haven’t been announced yet, but last year there were more than 20 and the number of Spokane breweries has just about doubled in the past year. (A few nearby Idaho breweries will also be in the mix.) Each brewery is required to serve at least two styles, with one of them being a fall seasonal or pumpkin beer.
“Lifetime Members for Life” and a handful of newbies who didn’t get FBC Spokane’s “Wear All Black” memo showed up at the Swamp Tavern on Saturday night for the club’s Final Full Moon Fiasco. Mountain bikes, road bikes, cruisers and fixies occupied every stationary pole and pipe in sight as bikers milled around the tavern in the moments before the ride. One LMFL towed a cardboard coffin stamped with the words “RIP FBC. Don’t be sad that it is over, be glad that it happened.”
As a sign of grief, some wore funereal costumes. Saturday was FBC Spokane’s 6th birthday and finale, as organizer Jeff Everett decided he would no longer maintain the club. Once the ride began, one woman quipped, “What’s the best color for bikers to be wearing at night?” To which the mob of bikers replied, “Black!”
A newly married couple taking wedding photos got caught in the middle of the estimated 400 bikers riding through Spokane. Riders cooed and congratulated them as they tried to keep a straight face for the camera.
There is only one rule of the FBC: “Don’t be an asshole.” This entails following the rules of the road, and more specifically, not riding through red lights. Most obeyed. Some were assholes.
The crowd coasted down W. Clarke Avenue and across the Spokane River, through a bit of dusty trail and onto Broadway Avenue, where spectators cheered the riders with whoops and high fives, or heckled some for not wearing helmets. Arrival at Riverfront Park cued riders to circle the Rotary Fountain en masse.
Upon reaching Breakstone Place on Washington Street, the FBC settled in for beers, prizes, and music from heavy rock band Red Cloud. Riders who scored one of Jeff’s 200 laminated spoke cards were eligible for prizes during the raffle at the end of the night.
There was no heartfelt speech of nostalgia, but instead an upbeat and sarcastic see-you-on-the-road. While Jeff has insisted he wants someone else to organize their own version of the club, is uncertain at this point what will happen to Spokane’s motley club of beer-drinking bike riders.
Last night, the Royal Fireworks Concert in Riverfront Park crackled its last pop. (SR)
Potentially a good sign for the housing market in Spokane: One developer is talking about restarting a proposed 220-acre development plan, if he can get enough incentives, of course. (SR)
Three days of pure Matt Shea. (CDAP)
The Pope doesn't have a problem with celibate, gay priests. (NYT)
Colorado politicians face political backlash after passing tough new gun legislation. (NYT)
What happens to whistleblowers after they blow that whistle. (WP)
Olympia man finds the danger of playing Fast, Furious with unmarked police car. (The Olympian)
Slate columnist Dave Weigel, an Actual Journalist, has been having a bit of fun with the pretend journalists on HBO's The Newsroom.