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Brew Five Three

Tacoma's big brew fest this weekend

Photo credit: Scott Haydon

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Now that we're firmly implanted into summertime and the torrid sun is giving its all to melt us, it only seems logical that a cold beverage would be the perfect remedy to combat the heat. Hoppy day drinking is coming back to Tacoma this weekend in the form of a street festival called Brew Five Three. Now entering its fourth year, Brew Five Three is an awesome block party in Tacoma's Theatre District that celebrates all things beer, brew and beverage. Whether you're a beer aficionado or a casual beer fan, this annual downtown event promises to satisfy your beertooth with a bevy of thirst-quenching options.

"What makes this festival unique is that it's a combination of brewers and music all in one location," said Mariesa Bus of the Broadway Center for the Performing Arts, a proud sponsor of the event. "We partner closely with The Red Hot for their input on the breweries, and with Immanuel Presbyterian Church Blues Vespers to help us plan the best blues music offerings. At this festival, you'll see beer enthusiasts as well as blues fans, with everyone having a great time, no matter what's brought them to Brew Five Three."

Craft and artisan breweries from all over the Pacific Northwest will have booths set up on Broadway between 11th and 9th streets. While venturing down this heavenly beer wonderland, get adventurous by sampling familiar favorites or trying innovative brews that challenge traditional tastes. Brew Five Three will showcase more than 30 breweries from Washington state alone, including 7 Seas Brewery, Elysian Brewing Company and Gig Harbor Brewing.

Not only will Brew Five Three feature a wealth of craft pale ales, lagers, darks and blonds, but the event will also be stocked with food trucks, all set against a backdrop of the delightful sounds of live blues music.

"Brew Five Three brings people together to celebrate the great things about summer in Tacoma," Bus said, "beer, music, great food and community."

Four musical groups are slated to perform throughout the day and complete the overall Brew Five Three experience.

"Like the prior three years, attendees can look forward to (more than) 35 Washington state breweries and cideries," Bus explained. "They can also expect some returning vendors and some new, plus a full day of blues, funk and Americana musicians from the area. Paul Green, Rod Cook & Toast, and Barleywine Revue will take the stage this year, with headliner the Stacy Jones Band to close the festival."

Dancing to the music and sampling so many beers can easily make you work up an appetite for delicious food. Luckily, a pleasant group of food trucks is coming to the rescue, including Viet Nom Nom, Burrito Boy, Gnosh, Lumpia World, Great Northwest Popcorn and Stacks Burgers. With such a wide variety of dining opportunities, there will be no excuse to go hungry at Brew Five Three.

To take part in this blues and brews fest, come to Tacoma's Theatre District on Aug. 13 from 1 to 8 p.m. - rain or shine!  The event is - perhaps obviously - 21 and up, so please don't bring little Timmy or Lily along with you. A sitter can provide them with more age-appropriate beverages while you keep that sampling cup busy. ID is required without exception. Tame pooches are permitted if they are leashed. Buy tickets online or in person at the Broadway Center Box Office.

Brew Five Three, 1 to 8 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 13, Tacoma's Theatre District, Broadway and 9th, $30 (DD tickets are $10), 253.591.5894,

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