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  • Avery is celebrating Denver's sold-out Great American Beer Festival with...

    Colorado Daily file

    Avery is celebrating Denver's sold-out Great American Beer Festival with special events, tappings and extended hours.

  • Alexandra Sieh

    Alexandra Sieh



My group and I have done our best to rise in the ranks from PBR guzzlers to microbrew snobs.

We’ve teetered from one brewery to the next, sampling and laughing at folks with matching outfits and memorizing trivia questions so we might win even more beer.

Our water bottles are littered with stickers from Front Range taprooms. We’ve procured, through varying means, T-shirts and cups and (oh, wait!) more stickers. Looking at us, you’d think, “Wow, those borderline alcoholics sure know their beer!”

Yes, well. That’s us on an ambitious day.

Here we are planning a birthday, and all we can come up with is a 24-pack of cheap-o brewskies, beer pong and a rapid line of Car Bombs.

Our “wild nights” seem to fall back on an 18-pack of discounted Corona and/or box wine (our new favorite thing, actually. It’s a fun game to tap the box and, four glasses later, wonder how much that is, bottle-wise.)

The point? You can’t get complacent with your drinking. Don’t be those mid-20 somethings all sad and broke and crying over spilt $2.50 wine.

Course, let’s not act like we all have the dinero for shmancy adventures at things like the Great American Beer Festival. Nor do we have the planning capabilities.

That’s why local breweries have done us all a solid and planned Boulder shenanigans while everyone else gets sloshed in Denver.

Like Avery Brewery (5763 Arapahoe Ave.). They’ve extended their hours Thursday to Saturday from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m., with complimentary tours at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. Oh, and breakfast from 9 to 11 a.m. with grub made special for GABF. OH! And rare beers tapped each day at 10 a.m., 12 p.m., 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.

Or OK, there’s Upslope Brewery too. At the Flatiron Park tap room (1898 S. Flatiron Court), they’ve set up some lovely options. Like a specialty beer tapping at 4 p.m. on Thursday. Say hello to their Oatmeal Stout, folks, and pair with grub from Street Eats, set to be parked out at 3:30 p.m.

Saturday, they’ll have “Brunch on the Barbie,” which is not, in fact, tiny portions served on anatomically-incorrect dolls. It’s the Aussie-style brunch of theirs rife with eggs, sausage, hot dogs and brats. That’ll be out 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. At 3 p.m. the Heirloom food truck will arrive for you afternoon drinkers and they’ll have tunes from Caribou Mountain Collective.

And at BRU Handbuilt Ales (5290 Arapahoe Ave.), you can drop $20 for a flight tasting with the brewery’s founder Ian Clark. There’ll also be a brewery tour and some snackage. That’s at 6 p.m.

We all know someone who was hit hard by this flooding. It was awful. Water everywhere. And while lucky folks were able to dry out and get on with things, there’s still plenty working to recover. So if you’re up for it, hit one of the benefits happening this weekend.

Like the Celtic Steps flood relief benefit happening at Conor O’Neill’s (1922 13th St.). Irish step dancers, great drinks and proceeds going to a good cause. Check it out Friday at 6 p.m.

The First United Methodist Church (1421 Spruce St.) is hosting a Celebrating Lyons concert Saturday at 2 p.m., with Lyons-own musicians, like The Songbirds, The Granias and Junior Burke. All benefits will go to the Lyons Community Foundation.

Feeling artsy? Well you can head over to madelife (2000 21st St.) Thursday at 7 p.m. for the Design Relief benefit. Your donations will get you a limited edition custom ART shirt designed by local artists and live music by Raw Russ and DJ Russo. The proceeds are for Donate Boulder and Boulder Mudslingers. Head to for tickets, or get ’em at the door.

And well, because it’s me, here’s a few randoms, should your weekend not be jam-packed enough yet.

On Thursday, at 6 p.m., a beautiful thing will be happening at Walnut Brewery (1123 Walnut St.) — free beer. (Woah, saliva-filled mouth.) For a half hour, in honor of their new brew tapping, the brewery will be giving away 20-ounce Sled Dog Beers to those with a legit ID. And when you keep drinking because it was so delicious, part of that money will go to the Boulder Humane Society.

Pearl Street Pub (1108 Pearl St.) has a nice surprise for you. The pub is now serving up Pumpkick Spiced Seasonal Ale from New Belgium Brewing up north in Ft. Collins. Yum. It was just introduced Wednesday.

At Absinthe House (1109 Walnut St.), you can check out Hollidayrain in the main room on Friday night and Paul Anthony with Ricard on Saturday.

Food lovers unite! God I love food. And believe it or not, there’s a film fest for people like us. The International Film Series’ Food Film Festival is running Thursday through Sunday, with movies all about food from around the world. And if you show ’em your student ID, your tickets are cheaper. Nice. Head to for the full line up, ticket prices, etc.

Follow Alex on Twitter: @ansieh.

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