Wrap-up: Philly Beer Week’s First-Ever Bluegrass Festival

The 2018 edition of Philly Beer Week brought to Philadelphia a new event: a daylong bluegrass festival at Heritage jazz club in Northern Liberties. The festival featured some of the best picking that the Philly bluegrass scene has to offer. It was, as the Philadelphia Inquirer called it, a “bluegrass-centric celebration of beer,” with featured beers from Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.

The festival stretched from noon until around 8pm. It all started with the weekly Heritage Bluegrass Brunch, featuring Mark Schultz & The Wayne Rangers, followed by an open, on-stage bluegrass jam (led by Dave Shepherd), and performances into the night by more of Philly’s best bluegrass, with sets from The Citywide Specials, Midnight Flyer, and River Bones Band.

Lisa Schaffer Photography was on hand to capture the fun.

Visit Lisa’s page for a huge gallery of 70-plus photos from day.

This was a community-driven event, with dozens of people coming together to make it all happen through donations, volunteering, and, of course, jamming their faces off. The event was made possible in part by Philly Bluegrass Members, whose donations provided the seed funding to make the day possible. Also making it possible was the support from the incredible staff at CultureTrust Greater Philadelphia, which provides fiscal sponsorship of Philly Bluegrass.

It’s a good bet that the festival will return—even bigger and better—for Philly Beer Week 2019. If you were there, you can help with the planning for next year by sharing any feedback or suggestions you have.

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