UPDATE II: Wait list is at 300+ per The Brewers Association. The list topped out at 70 last year.
(Denver, CO) – On Tuesday, the Brewers Association opened brewery registration for The Great American Beer Festival. Each year, the registration list fills up within days. Last year, it only took two days for 580 breweries to sign up.
This year, however, it only took less than two hours for 600 breweries.
Those who planned their Tuesday morning around the signup time and successfully filled out the form gained entry into this year’s event. Many others missed out and were left with the option of a waiting list in the form of Google Docs, wondering what could have been.
Complicating this year’s registration were server issues, something that has become quite common with limited events.
Typically, this is the position that consumers have found themselves in with limited releases. For example, the demand for events like the 2012 GABF, Three Floyds’ Dark Lord Day and a Founders Backstage release caused server stress and consumer frustration.
The hard truth is that all consumers (and *perhaps*, breweries) are playing by the same rules for these releases and pointing out the problem is much easier than thinking up the solution.
Tomme Arthur of The Port Brewing / The Lost Abbey, which did get in, asked (in the third person) what breweries did not. A few of those who answered include: Weyerbacher, Nodding Head Brewpub, Populuxe Brewing and Shawnee Craft Brewing. Bristol Brewing and Rocky Mountain Brewery also told The Gazette that they missed out. Crooked Stave is another.
Some Twitter highlights and others who missed out on Tuesday…
Missed out on @GABF this year, brewers filled up in less than a day. BA member for ten years. First chance to sit down all day. Bull hock
— Linus Hall (@yazoobrewmaster) July 9, 2013
— Societe Brewing Co (@SocieteBrewing) July 9, 2013
@BrewersAssoc wait listed us for The GABF. Unreal, we will still do the Rare Beer Tasting on Friday.
— Prairie Artisan Ales (@prairieales) July 10, 2013
— Tony Corder (@TonyCorder) July 9, 2013
— Craig Mycoskie (@TXbrewerCraig) July 10, 2013
Bad News: We cannot defend our Gold's. Good News: Surfing in Central America this October! #GABF
— j tofte (@ThaiMeUpBrewery) July 9, 2013
Is it time for an NIT-esque alternative to emerge?
UPDATED (BUT INCOMPLETE) WAITLIST/SHUT-OUT LIST:
35 Breweries & Counting (including some 2012 medalists)…
5050 (FiftyFifty) Brewing
Badger Hill Brewing
Black Diamond Brewing
(The) Cambridge House Beer Company
Central Waters Brewing
Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project
Eagle Rock Brewery
Natty Greene’s Brewing
Noble Ale Works
Nodding Head Brewpub
Off Color Brewing
Olde Burnside Brewing
Perennial Artisan Ales
Prairie Artisan Ales
Rahr & Sons Brewing
Rocky Mountain Brewery
Shawnee Craft Brewing
Thai Me Up Brewery
Vintage 50 Restaurant & Brew Lounge