By Marisela Burgos
INDIANAPOLIS – For the first time since 1946, there will be alcohol served at the Indiana State Fair.
The new exhibit will be located at Grand Hall. It is called the Indiana Beer and Wine Exhibit. It will be open every day between 1 and 9 p.m. Last call will be at 8 p.m. There will be various breweries and wineries featured each day.
The concept of the Indiana Beer and Wine Exhibit is to show-off Indiana’s growing agriculture.
“The beer and wine industry has grown tremendously (the) last 15 years. This is the first chance to showcase products at the biggest celebration of agriculture in the state,” Andy Klotz said.
Klotz is the public relations director for the Indiana State Fair Commission.
“Obviously, our first concern is the safety of everybody, and then our family atmosphere and that’s not something we’re going to sacrifice,” Klotz said.
People who want to visit the Indiana Beer and Wine Exhibit will be carded at the door. They will then be given a wrist band. There will be a three drink maximum. People can purchase a combination of samples and servings.
A third party vendor was contracted for this exhibit. Those servers will pour people’s drinks -not the local winery or brewery.
“We will have security on hand to see if people are misusing the wrist band or trying to take advantage of the system that’s in place,” Klotz said.
Hoosiers will notice the exhibit is a combination of agriculture, history, and alcohol.
“I’m really glad that, you know, after so many years the state fair (has) finally changed their minds about this,” Tow Yard Brewing Company Brewer, Will Moorman said.
Tow Yard Brewing Company will be featured at the fair on opening day, which is Friday. They will have 3 beers for people to taste. Moorman will be at the exhibit to answer people’s questions about Tow Yard Brewing Company.
“I think a lot of people, who don’t drink craft beer, will come (to) the fair and be surprised that it’s not crazy…and there’s a beer out there for everybody,” Moorman said.
If you visit the exhibit, you will not be allowed to leave Grand Hall with a drink.
“I know we’re going to have some growing issues and we’re going to learn that, but we are as…..it’s coming together. (I am) just so excited to be apart of this,” Operations Manager for the Exhibit, Denny Newman said.
For a complete list of breweries and wineries that will be featured at the state fair and on which days they will be featured, go to this link.