What to look forward to at the Great American Beer Festival

"I almost felt like I was cheating on my husband.  My night out was not a rendezvous with another man, but instead at the Great American Beer Festival," said Faith Mangan. "After I guiltily left my American IPA-loving mate at home this past weekend, I made my way to Denver's Colorado Convention Center for what’s been touted as the world's largest commercial beer competition and the country's largest ticketed beer festival."

  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/8cbc13db-beerpitchers.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Beer varieties

    More than 3,000 different beers are showcased at GABF. Breweries have to be commercially operating and licensed in the United States to get into GABF.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/de23d5b4-tshirts.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    GABF souvenirs

    Get your souvenirs early on because the line to pick out t-shirts can stretch rather long as sessions came to a close.  
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/e9369029-conventionhall.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Convention Hall

    The convention hall is laid out mostly by regions for beers.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/95ff9126-icecoldbeers.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Ice cold beers

    Brewers also pour ice cold beer from cans and bottles, in addition to drafts.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/54dc95ea-mardigrasbeer.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Beers and beads

    Beer companies give out holders for tasting glasses.  Mardi Gras beads help the can holders hang around people's necks.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/9ad24c47-silentdisco.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Silent Disco

    At the Silent Disco, dancers get headsets to rock out, only bystanders have no idea what they're dancing to.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/5cb3dac5-marriages.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Marriage ceremonies

    One brewery offers mock and real marriage ceremonies.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/01fc27c6-beersignage.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Brewery signage

    Breweries have a wide range of signage and booths. More than 700 breweries participate. The Great American Beer Festival (GABF) is in its 33rd year and keeps growing each year.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/c9c0dc0d-bottlecaps.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Beer jewelry

    GABF attendees can even shop for jewelry made from recycled beer caps and cans.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/22dab8bc-volunteers123.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Festival volunteers

    Volunteer beer crew serve beer at sessions and earn free tickets.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/d1447644-cheeseline.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    American Cheese Society

    One of the longer lines at the festival, for a buffet of cheese samples from the American Cheese Society.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/b133cc14-peachandbeer.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Grilled peach and sour beer

    You can take a break and sit in on educational seminars, such as pairing cookout foods with beer. This is a grilled peach served with sour beer.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/6c47ef84-gabfattendees.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Attendees

    49,000 total attend, an average of 12,000 per session.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/01fc27c6-beerfooddemos.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Beer and food demos

    There are other opportunities for fun and learning, besides drinking your dinner. Ticket holders can attend demos.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/60da1ebc-IMG_2006.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Tasting glass holders

    Many attendees pick up free tasting glass holders and hang the necklaces around their necks.  It's considered a big no-no to let your tasting glass drop to the floor.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/9c8e6923-IMG_2041.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Beer goggles

    One man literally brought his "beer goggles."
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/d4e4ff03-IMG_2042.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Oktoberfest costumes

    Oktoberfest styled costumes are popular.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/26737137-IMG_2055.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Group costumes

    It's not uncommon for groups of friends to coordinate their costumes.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/6c47ef84-IMG_2056.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Hops hat

    One of the more unusual headgear items, a hops hat.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/IMG_4147.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Hair hops

    Serious beer drinkers weave hops into their hair.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/IMG_4142.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Bavarian hats

    Bavarian style hats are popular.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/IMG_4144.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Beer warrior

    A beer drinking warrior.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/IMG_4159.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Snack necklaces

    A hearty version of the edible pretzel necklaces, adding cheese sticks is a tasty twist.
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/IMG_4173.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Pirates

    Pirates!
    Faith Mangan
  • https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/918/516/IMG_4178.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

    Face paint

    Face paint mixes nicely with kilts. 
    Faith Mangan
Image 1 of 24