In an effort to promote Maryland's craft beer industry, which has more than 50 breweries operating and more to come, Gov. Larry Hogan has proclaimed this month "FeBREWary." Events featuring beers from state breweries are scheduled to take place all month long.
While the relatively mild weather of spring, summer and fall works well for beer-related festivities, FeBREWary's organizers — the Maryland Office of Tourism, Brewers Association of Maryland and the promotional website Shore Craft Beer — aimed to create a winter event. Once they decided to tap into the romanticism associated with February, the month-long celebration was born, Maryland Office of Tourism communications specialist Leslie Troy said.
"People are looking to get out and do things, but at the same time, they don't want to necessarily go outside and do an outdoor event," Troy said. "[This is] a really great opportunity for people to travel across the state, and go to different locations in their own backyard that they never would have thought to go to. It's just a fun way to experience Maryland through beer."
FeBREWary's initial idea, Troy said, came from Sen. Jim Mathias, the Ocean City politician who believes the Eastern Shore should market itself as a craft-beer destination and not just a beach getaway. Naturally, many of the events take place on the Eastern Shore and highlight breweries from the area, including Evolution Craft Brewing Company, Fin City Brewing Company and others. (New beers from Eastern Shore companies like Evolution and Assawoman Bay Brewing Company are making their debuts this month as well.)
A full calendar of FeBREWary events can be found here. In terms of safety, there are hotel-and-brewery packages available that include transportation to and from events from participating hotels.
These are the major events, along with ones happening in the city:
• "Brewmore Baltimore: FeBREWary," 6:30-8:30 p.m. Thursday at the Baltimore Museum of Industry, 1415 Key Highway, Locust Point Industrial Area. Free showing of the Baltimore beer documentary. Click here for more information.
• "Max's Taphouse's 12th Annual Belgian Beer Fest," 11-2 a.m. Feb. 12-14 at 737 S. Broadway, Fells Point. Free. Click here for more information.
• "Love Thy Beer: Winter Warmer Showcase," 6-10 p.m. Feb. 12 at the Silver Spring Civic Center, 1 Veterans Place, Silver Spring. $65-$80. Click here for more information.
• "Vintage Valentine's Day," 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Feb. 14 at Heavy Seas Beer, 4615 Hollins Ferry Road, Suite B, Halethorpe. Brewery tour, vintage beers and a unique cask. Click here for more information.
• "Shore Craft Beer Fest: Love on Tap," 1-4 p.m. Feb. 20 at Seacrets, 117 49th St., Ocean City. $10-$25. Click here for more information.