LEWISTON — Baxter Brewing plans to launch a beer festival in June in Simard-Payne Memorial Park.

The inaugural Great Falls Brewfest will offer a variety of beer, food, activities and entertainment from around Maine and the rest of the country on June 21.

“I can’t think of a better way to welcome summer, and to kick off the festival season here in Lewiston-Auburn,” said Luke Livingston, Baxter’s founder and CEO.

“We’re going to be pouring more than 100 beers from all over the country, some of which have never been seen in Lewiston-Auburn,” said Ben Low, director of brewing operations. “But it’s also about a completely fun experience, and ours will have all kinds of things to do in addition to tasting terrific beer.”

Beer tents will be set up for 30 brewers including Allagash, Atlantic Brewing, Bissell Brothers, Black Bear, Foundation Brewing, Gneiss Brewing, Gritty McDuff’s, In’Finiti Fermentation and Distillation, Maine Mead Works, Rising Tide, Sebago, Sunday River Brewing and Urban Farm Fermentory — all from Maine.

The festival also has lined up out-of-state brewers Brooklyn of New York, Clown Shoes of Ipswich, Mass., Downeast Cider of Charlestown, Mass., Founders of Grand Rapids, Mich., Green Flash of San Diego, Lagunitas of Petaluma, Calif., Moat Mountain of North Conway, N.H., North Coast of Fort Bragg, Calif., Pretty Things of Cambridge, Mass., Slumbrew of Somerville, Mass., Smuttynose of Portsmouth, N.H., Stone Brewing of Escondido, Calif., Traveler Beer of Boston, Sierra Nevada of Chico, Calif., and Samuel Adams of Boston.

In addition to beer-tasting, festival-goers can expect live music, an outdoor art installation, a sanctioned cornhole tournament and a climbing wall sponsored by Baxter Outdoors. There also will be a mini craft fair featuring local artisans, expected to be announced soon. Music acts will include The Ghost of Paul Revere and The Squid Jiggers.

Auburn Mayor Jonathan LaBonte, executive director of the Androscoggin Land Trust, said Baxter Brewing has proven to be a valuable partner over the years.

The company has been instrumental in helping get folks out paddling on the Androscoggin River and is a sponsor of the annual river cleanup, which is scheduled for the morning of the festival, LaBonte said.

“So, it’s a good chance to kick off summer with folks who want to get their hands dirty cleaning up the river and then heading over for some great craft beer,” he said.

“I know where I’ll be spending most of my day,” said LaBonte, who confessed to a love of all Baxter beers.

LaBonte credited Baxter with putting the Twin Cities on the map. “They’re very much community-minded,” he said. Known throughout New England for their distinct beers, hosting a local event “truly shows they know where they come from.”

Forage Market, Uproot Pie Company, PB & ME, Pretzel Logic, Pinky D’s and Hella Good Tacos are among the food vendors slated for the festival.

The third annual Androscoggin River cleanup rafting event, in collaboration with the Androscoggin Land Trust, will include teams of volunteers in water and on land.

Schedule

  • 8:30-11:30 a.m.: Androscoggin River cleanup.
  • Noon- 1 p.m.: VIP session with access to specialty small batch brews provided by each brewery.
  • 1-5 p.m.: General admission.

All events will take place, rain or shine.

Prices

  • $60, VIP
  • $40, General admission
  • $20, Designated driver

Tickets can be purchased at the Baxter Brewing tasting room, 130 Mill St., Lewiston, or online at www.greatfallsbrewfest.com/.


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