Fresh Hop Ale Festival Returns To Yakima in October 2021

image courtesy of the Yakima Fresh Hop Ale Festival
image courtesy of the Yakima Fresh Hop Ale Festival

Fresh hop beers will be the center of attention in Yakima, Washington this fall when the 2021 Yakima Fresh Hop Ale Festival returns on Saturday, October 2, 2021. After one year off due to the pandemic, one of the best beer festivals in the country will make its triumphant return later this year.

This year’s festival will have a new home in the region that produces over 70% of the nation’s hops. Normally the Yakima Fresh Hop Ale Festival takes place in downtown Yakima but this year the festival is moving south of town to the SOZO Sports of Central Washington Complex.

Tickets to the 2021 Yakima Fresh Ale Hop Festival are now on sale for the event that takes place from 5:00-10:00pm on October 2nd. There are two ticket options, along with two designated driver ticket options, all listed below.

  • VIP ($95): Early entry at 4pm, complimentary dinner and snacks, commemorative glass, goodie bag, 8 tasting tokens, exclusive tap handles, casual seating, coat check, games and live music all night!
  • VIP Designated Driver ($50): VIP: Early entry at 4pm, complimentary dinner and snacks, non-alcoholic beverages, goodie bag, 8 tasting tokens, exclusive tap handles, casual seating, coat check, games and live music all night!
  • General Admission ($50): Festival entry at 5pm, commemorative glass, 4 tasting tokens and live music all night!
  • General Admission Designated Driver ($20): Festival entry at 5pm, special goodie bag, non-alcoholic beverages and live music all night!

If you purchased a ticket to the 2020 festival and opted to keep them, you will be contacted via email with confirmation and instructions for this year’s event. All tickets will be honored. Learn more by visiting https://freshhopalefestival.com.

SOZO Sports of Central Washington Complex will be the home of the 2021 Yakima Fresh Hop Festival. (image courtesy of Yakima Fresh Hop Festival)
SOZO Sports of Central Washington Complex will be the home of the 2021 Yakima Fresh Hop Festival. (image courtesy of Yakima Fresh Hop Ale Festival)

Since the festival has moved locations just outside of Yakima to the SOZO Sports of Central Washington Complex, organizers will have shuttles running from multiple locations and hotels to the event. The SOZO facility also offers more than 2,000 parking spots, and designated driver tickets are available as well. This new location is larger and will allow for additional bathrooms, hand-washing stations to keeping everyone healthy while they still having a fantastic time.

One thing to do now for those traveling outside of the Yakima Valley is to reserve a hotel room as in years past these can go pretty quickly. An excellent resource for travel info on the area, including hotels, is the Yakima Valley Tourism that can be accessed here: https://www.visityakima.com/.

The Fresh Hop Ale Festival (FHAF) was created by Allied Arts of Yakima in 2003. Conceived as a fundraiser for the arts, the Yakima FHAF was an unlikely catalyst for the emerging craft beer explosion. At the festival’s inception, “wet hop” or “fresh hop” beers were almost unheard of. The original lineup of beers included less than 10 breweries. Now the festival has grown to host over 60 breweries and raise a significant amount of money supporting Yakima Valley arts and science programs.

The Fresh Ale Hop Festival isn’t just, “One of the 10 Best Beer Festivals in the Nation”, it’s also a vehicle for community enrichment and positive social change.

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