Enjoy a brew at the Mt. Pleasant Craft Beer Festival and feel good about helping your community

Sample some of the finest beer, cider and seltzers crafted in the great state of Michigan and support a good cause this fall. On Sat., Sept. 24, the Mt. Pleasant Jaycees present the 8th annual Mt. Pleasant Craft Beer Festival downtown on Broadway Street.

Over 20 breweries from throughout the state will be on hand to help with the fundraising event that over the last nine years has provided over $185,000 to local non-profits.

“All of the proceeds go back into our community,” says Lindsay Miller, Jaycees board member.

For several years, the Jaycees held a duck race and other fundraisers to raise money for its spring and fall “gives” but Miller says the events were smaller and didn’t raise the necessary funds. The Jaycees donate $10,000 each spring and again in the fall to non-profits such as the United Way of Gratiot and Isabella Counties, Life Choices of Central Michigan, and Isabella Community Soup Kitchen, and local schools.

In order to meet the need, Miller says, “the organization needed something bigger,” so they opted to hold a Craft Beer Festival, which has seen much success. Each year since 2014, the event has grown, and provides not only a sampling of some of the state’s best brews, and ciders, but food trucks, and live entertainment.

Mt. Pleasant’s two breweries, Mountain Town Station and Hunter’s Ale House, will be there, as will a handful from nearby Midland, Clare, Wheeler, and Bay City. Bell’s Brewery in Kalamazoo, Middle Coast Brewing Company of Traverse City, and Upper Hand Brewery from Escanaba will make the trek to Mt. Pleasant, as well as a handful of others from throughout the state.

Cheers to fundraising during the 2022 Mt. Pleasant Craft Beer Festival on Sept. 24.“We always try to put on a fun, great event for everyone,” Miller says, adding they’ve put more emphasis on food this year, too. “We’re focusing more on food being from food trucks this year, and we’re expanding down Broadway so the festival will have a little bigger footprint.”

In the past the event was held in the parking lot adjacent to Jockey Alley behind Isabella Bank, but Miller says it’s grown enough that it will take up a few blocks of the downtown street.

As usual, no one under 21 will be allowed into the festival, and tickets will be required. Miller says new this year is an online only ticketing system, with either general admission or VIP Tickets. The difference is the number of drink tickets, admission time, and festival swag.

Tickets are also available for designated drivers. Miller says event is meant to be fun, and everyone should have a plan to get home safely.

Last year’s Craft Beer Festival was the first post-pandemic, and raised $33,000. All that money went back into the community. Miller says though there isn’t a set fundraising goal, “anything over $30,000 will allow us to make a significant difference for the community in the spring and fall next year.”

To purchase tickets and a full list of breweries visit mpbeerfest.com.