Hops Fest returns

Saturday event lures 64 breweries from around the Northwest

Hops forward, even in headwear like this festival-goer in 2011, is the spirit of the sixth-annual event.

Photo by Kirby Neumann-Rea.
Hops forward, even in headwear like this festival-goer in 2011, is the spirit of the sixth-annual event.

A record crowd is expected for Saturday’s Hood River Hops Fest, according to Kerri Cobb, executive director of Hood River Chamber of Commerce.

Sixty-four breweries, including eight from the Mid-Columbia, are signed up for the all-day festival, which opens at noon at Fifth and Columbia streets.

Turn to page A2 for full details.

About 8,000 people attended the festival in 2011, the first year the chamber organized it and the first year specific attendance numbers were kept. (In 2010, the unofficial head count was 5,500.) Cobb is expecting even more this year.

She said the chamber has marketed Hops Fest directly to participating breweries, “many of whom have large fan bases.”

Meanwhile the Festival’s Facebook page follower list grew from 400 to more than 2,500 since 2011.

Cobb said this year the chamber expects a number of regional and national beer writers — and prime weather conditions.

She said that in light of the large crowd expected, “We hope people arrive and leave at an even pace,” bus said “We have great security, and so many volunteers involved.

“Last year was a really good crowd, lots of families, and locals.”

But Cobb said she recognizes that “this will be one full parking lot.” A venue change may be in order for the future, she said. (The festival started in 2006 a block away in the smaller parking lot at Fourth and Cascade, moving after two years to its current location.)

“We’re going to watch and see what happens,” she said.

Seven breweries will be presenting fresh-hopped beers at the festival, including Full Sail Brewery, which celebrates the season’s first hops with Hopfenfrisch, a Pilsner style lager, showcasing the Perle hop variety.

The brewery celebrates its 25th year with its new “25” Doppelbock ale, presented for first toast at 5 p.m. Thursday at the Full Sail Tasting room.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge



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