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The Journal Gazette

  • Photos by Rachel Von | The Journal Gazette Zack Tippmann, left, and Nick Feipel enjoy singing along during the Leigh Roberson musical performance Saturday at Brew Haven at Schnelker Park in New Haven.

  • Casie Wright of Junk Ditch Brewing Company in Fort Wayne gets ready to pour a beer Saturday for Tracy Carboni as Patrick Gould, second from left, and Todd Stone look on.

  • Rachel Von | The Journal Gazette Guests enjoy checking out various vendors at Brew Haven at Schnelker Park in New Haven on Saturday August 4, 2018. VIDEO  

  • Rachel Von | The Journal Gazette Andy Marshall, left, and Lauren Curran with Shoreline Brewery work on pouring beers for customers at Brew Haven at Schnelker Park in New Haven on Saturday August 4, 2018. VIDEO  

  • Rachel Von | The Journal Gazette Nick Wright tests his luck at giant jenga at Brew Haven at Schnelker Park in New Haven on Saturday August 4, 2018. VIDEO

Sunday, August 05, 2018 1:00 am

2,000 hop on over to get good sip of Brew Haven

CHARLOTTE STEFANSKI | The Journal Gazette

Despite the heat, a line wrapped around Schnelker Park in New Haven for the eighth annual Brew Haven Festival on Saturday.

Expecting attendance to be more than 2,000, the festival featured about 300 craft beers from more than 50 breweries. The Trion Tavern, Pour Misfits Brew Crew and MASH sponsored the event.

“There's a lot to choose from here, but you know what, they're all great beers,” director Greg Jacquay said. “Everyone's palette is just a little bit different. Some people like certain things, some people like other things, it just depends on the individual.”

While many breweries featured were local, others came from as far as Wyoming, like Melvin Brewing.

Dave Chichura, brewing director, said founder Jeremy Tofte began thinking about expanding their beer to a wider audience.

“It's kind of blown up ever since,” Chichura said.

With Fort Wayne being the second-largest city in the state, it would be a key market for Melvin Brewing. The brewery is making its way around Indiana, and will begin distributing in the state soon.

“We're just going to see what happens. We're getting our name out there and our beer out there,” Chichura said.

Fort Wayne native Christie Wentland has never been to a brewing event, and called Brew Haven her inaugural festival.

While she came to explore different ciders, her plan was derailed.

“Initially, I was looking forward to these ciders, but then my husband told me I couldn't try a drink from every stand,” Wentland said. “From then it was commit to the challenge of doing that.”

Josh Henricks, another Fort Wayne native, has attended beer festivals across the state, but he says he always tries to come to Brew Haven every year.

One thing he looks forward to is 3 Floyds Brewing Co. out of Munster and local breweries that have popped up.

“When we come to brew fests, we're looking for things that aren't normally available,” Henricks said.

In comparison with other beer festivals in the area, Jacquay said they're all trying to achieve the same thing.

“I think they're all comparable. I don't look at this as a party, I look at it as more of a social event,” Jacquay said. “Brew Haven has a pretty good reputation, so I think we're doing something right.”

cstefanski@jg.net