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April 5, 2014

Belgian beer festival sells out in minutes

By Bera Dunau Cooperstown Crier
The Daily Star

---- — As expected, Belgium Comes to Cooperstown, Brewery Ommegang’s annual summer beer festival, sold out nearly 3,000 tickets within minutes.

“We had all of our tickets gone within five minutes,” said John Tuchowski, an events coordinator for Brewery Ommegang.

On Aug. 8 and 9 this year, BCTC will celebrate Belgian style beers and the breweries that brew them. Ommegang publicity manager Allison Capozza said this year’s festival will feature between 75 and 100 breweries, with beer tastings being included in the cost of admission.

In addition to beer, the festival will feature food, the conclusion of Brewery Ommegang’s HopChef competition, music and fireworks. No musical acts have been announced for the festival yet.

The theme of this year’s festival, which is being held for the 16th time, is Las Vegas aka “Sin City,” which Capozza said will make its way into every part of the festival.

“We always try to think of fun themes that we can really infuse into every aspect of the festival,” Capozza said. There will be, however, no gambling.

Tickets went on sale at noon Tuesday, with VIP tickets selling out in less than a minute, tickets with camping selling out in three minutes and all tickets selling out in five minutes, according to Tuchowski.

Capozza said tickets have been selling out at this rate since 2008, and that this result had been expected.

A prominent element of the festival will be the debut of the yet-to-be announced fourth beer inspired by HBO’s hit television series “Game of Thrones,” and brewed by Brewery Ommegang as part of a collaboration between the two companies.

VIPs at BCTC, as well as regular ticket holders who purchased “Game of Thrones” upgrade packages, will be treated to a “Game of Thrones” experience, which will include a bottle of the new beer, a commemorative glass and a photo opportunity with a replica of the Iron Throne from the show.

Initially, 300 “Game of Thrones” upgrades were offered, and they sold out in less than a minute, according to Tuchowski. An additional 200 upgrades were put on sale later in the day, which also sold out.