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CraftEd Benefit helps raise funds for the craft brewing program

Miranda Cunningham, Scene Reporter

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On Thursday, April 20 Bruce’s Place, located in Ellensburg Pasta Co on Main Street, will be hosting a fundraising event, CraftED Kittitas County, for the CWU’s craft brewing program. The event will begin at 5 p.m. and continue until closing at 9 p.m. Four local breweries will be supplying for the event, including: e Iron Horse Brewery, Whipsaw Brewing, Roslyn Brewing Company and Dru Bru. Each brewery will bring their own version of a Northwest Ale. When the beers are served, the attendees will not know which beer belongs to what brewery; the goal being to identify which beer belongs to the correct brewery.

The Northwest Ale is the beer that attendees will be trying that night, but this event will also be the beers debut. Michael McCarthy, a junior in the Craft Brewing program explained he is excited to taste the Northwest Ale as well as try Roslyn’s and Dru Bru’s products since he has not tried them before. He is also interested in seeing how the event plays out he explained. “It sounds really interesting and fun and it’s a good opportunity for people who may not know a lot about craft brewing.”

The CWU craft brewing program became an official bachelor’s degree at CWU on April 20, 2015 and the event held this Thursday will celebrate the two year anniversary of the program. CWU is the only school in the state that has this program. The benefit is being held because craft brewing is new and the faculty of the department want to collect funds for new equipment and to expand the program.

When customers enter the event they will be encouraged to buy the CraftED package supplied for the event, that way everyone who attends can get a sample of each of the beers. The $12 package includes a CraftED flight, a tasting sheet and a coupon for a free pint of your favorite NW Ale and the glass it comes in.  The glasses are specially made for each brewery so attendees can choose their favorite.

In addition, Bruce’s Place will be preparing different dishes for each beer according to what the breweries think would compliment the brew. After each attendee tastes samples the beers, they will fill out the tasting sheet and try to pair each beer with the brewing company.

For every correct answer, tasters will receive a raffle ticket. Raffle drawings will begin at 6:30 p.m. and will occur every 30 minutes after. The prizes are “swag bags” which will contain items such as cups, shirts and other merchandise from the four breweries. They will also be giving away tickets to the brew fest Iron Horse is hosting next month.

Katie Kuntz, program manager of the CWU craft brewing program, explained that the event is more about bringing the brewing community together rather than being a competition.

“It’s supporting the craft beer industry, and for [supporting] the craft beer community and for the love of [the] craft and the craft brewing program,” Kuntz said. She also added that Bruce’s Place is heavily involved in the local brewing industry. They always serve a large selection of locally brewed beers and often do tap take overs with other breweries, so it is the perfect location to have the event hosted.

Bruce’s Place is known for serving craft beer, explained Tyler Harris, the general manager at Bruce’s Place and Ellensburg Pasta Co. Every month the bar does a tap take-over and feature a specific brewery, some from all over but mostly northwest breweries. According to Harris, he is always trying to find a way to incorporate local breweries into these events but it would have been counterproductive because they can just go down the street and get the same beer for the same price. This event allowed him to involve local breweries and support the brewing program.  Harris added, “That’s [a benefit] a first for us as far as a pub night, is having it be a benefit night so we are excited”

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