2014 Great American Beer Festival Stats

2014 Great American Beer Festival Stats
In its thirty-third year, the Great American Beer Festival opens a window into the nation’s ever-growing craft beer community, stimulating innovation, strengthening camaraderie, and providing experiences in food and drink that expand the overall quality of life for those who experience it each year. Indeed, it can be an overwhelming adventure. Walking into the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, you are greeted by the blaring drone of bagpipers, washing the air like jets on take-off.

There is beer – lots of it. In fact, over 700 breweries and brewpubs served more than 3,500 different beers on the festival floor during 4 sessions in early October. But this is where its path skews off from most other beer fests: Education is high on the mark at the Great American Beer Festival.

Included upon entry are a number of activities for anyone willing to find their way to the designated hot-spots of beer knowledge, including: The Beer and Food Pavilion; In the Brewer’s Studio; You be the Judge; Farm to Table Pavilion; Pro Am and Homebrew Expo; Sustainability Pavilion; Support your Local Brewery Pavilion; Brewpub Pavilion; and a magnificent spread of specialty cheeses from the American Cheese Society.

One of the additional highlights included the Brewers Bookstore where over 60 author signings took place with experts from both the American and international stage. The statistics speak for themselves:

465 credentialed journalists attended the 2014 Great American Beer Festival
49,000 overall attendees
The 2014 GABF sold out to the public in 32 minutes
3,200 volunteers
18 State Guilds serving at the Guild Pavilion
Half of all attendees are from out of state

In addition, the GABF Competition is the largest commercial competition in the world. The stats will knock your socks off:

5,500 entries
1,330 breweries in competition
460 first-timer breweries in the competition
90 categories plus the Pro Am
91 entries in the Pro Am
150 competition volunteers
222 judges from 10 countries
145 styles of beer in the competition
279 entries in the American India Pale Ale (IPA) category – the most in the overall competition

Visit Denver, the city’s convention and visitor’s bureau, estimated that in 2012, the festival and attendees had a $7 million economic impact on the city of Denver. In 2015, the festival will be expanding with an additional 90,000 square feet and an even more robust schedule for education, tasting, and overall enjoyment.


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