Not only is May the month of birthday's in my family (Ben's, mine, my mom's, my sister's and also, as we just found out, Huey's), in Chicago, you might as well chalk May up to the month of craft beer!
American Craft Beer Week is May 13-19 and Chicago Craft Beer Week (CCBW), kicks off on May 16th and runs through May 26th. This is the 4th CCBW. We missed out the first year but have participated since 2010 (this is what we did last year), making this our third celebration. Both events are meant to celebrate and bring awareness to craft beer.
We're starting off the month's events with American Beer Classic on May 11th. The festival features numerous American breweries and hundreds of beer samples. Plus, it's located at Soldier Field!
CCBW consists of several events each day; from special pourings to brewery tap takeovers. In past years, there have been incentives to visit different bars and neighborhoods. Last year the city was divided into seven neighborhoods and each neighborhood had a map card. When you visited a CCBW participating bar, you were given a sticker. The goal was to collect as many stickers as possible. Collecting at least two stickers in five of the seven neighborhoods gave you VIP access to the finale party (an hour early admittance with free beer and food).
However, this year it seems that they've moved away from this idea; which is unfortunate because we enjoyed the "thrill" of seeing how many stickers we could get.
Fear not, we will still be biking around the city for 11 days to get our fill of good beer!