Erie County Fair Beer Competition Deadline Scheduled for April 7th

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The first step in the process to determine which homebrew will be named the 2017 Erie County Fair Craft Beer has been scheduled. Beginning Monday, April 3rd, homebrewers from across New York State may submit their brews in the Fair’s Homebrew Competition. The annual summer release of the limited run, craft beer based on the winning brew has become an anticipated tradition at the Erie County Fair for beer lovers.

Homebrew hobbyists have until Friday, April 7th to submit their beers for judging. In addition to the opportunity to win a gold medal for excellence, the Erie County Fair Homebrew Competition’s top entry will be professionally brewed and be named the 2017 “Erie County Fair Craft Beer.” 

A $20 entry fee allows homebrewers to submit up to five entries in categorical styles ranging from lagers and pilsners to a variety of ale. Any New York State resident is eligible to enter the Homebrew competition. Judging is scheduled to take place Saturday, April 22nd inside the Fair’s Ag-Grange Building. Top brews will be selected through a blind tasting panel made up of at least two certified master judges. 

Once a “Best of Show” winner is determined, the brewer will be asked to submit the brew’s recipe which will then be turned over to the professional brew master of Flying Bison.  Flying Bison will analyze the winning recipe to ensure that it is commercially and legally producible. In addition, an attempt will be made to brew the winning beer with all New York State sourced products.  Once kegged, Try-It Distributing will distribute the finished product for public purchase at select Western New York outlets prior to the Fair. During the Erie County Fair, several on-premises locations will feature the award winning beer.

Homebrewers interested in entering the competition can find complete rules and guidelines on the Erie County Fair Entries can be dropped off on Monday, April 3rd through Friday, April 7th between 9am and 5pm (with a copy of the entry form) to the Main Office of the Fairgrounds OR to Flying Bison Brewing Company on April 6th or 7th between the hours of 12pm and 8pm. Those dropping off brew entries entries at Flying Bison will be able to take home a filled growler of Flying Bison brew for $5.

The judging of homebrewed beer is just one of the competitions held annually by the Erie County Fair. In 2017, over 12,000 entries are expected to be received and judged by the Fair’s Competitive Exhibits Office. The wide range of ribbon winning categories include agriculture, conservation and creative arts, among others. Entry information for all other categories will be available online starting May 1st.    


About the Erie County Fair

The Erie County Agricultural Society is a private not-for-profit membership organization. Established in 1819, the Society is the oldest civic organization in Western New York. The mission of the Erie County Agricultural Society (ECAS), sponsors of the Erie County Fair, is to preserve and enhance, by educational endeavors, the agricultural and historical legacy of New York State. The Fair strives to fulfill appropriate aspects of the agricultural, educational, entertainment and recreational needs of Western New York.  The 178th Erie County Fair will be held August 9th – 20th, 2017. (


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