Harrisburg, PA (July14, 2020) -- Visit Hershey & Harrisburg (VHH) today launched the Brew Barons Beer Trail, an interactive mobile experience designed to draw visitors to more than 20 participating craft breweries and tasting locations in the Hershey Harrisburg Region.
Visitors can download the Brew Barons Beer Trail mobile app to see which breweries are nearby, mark their favorites, and search upcoming events like live music or special releases. Brewery guests can earn Brew Baron-themed prizes as they accrue check-ins at locations via the mobile app. Six (6) check-ins will earn the “Entrepreneur” collectible deck of Brew Barons Beer Trail playing cards. Guests become a “Visionary” with twelve (12) check-ins and earn an ale-can glass. With 17 check-ins, guests become a “Brew Baron” and will earn a stainless steel growler. Details can be found at www.brewbarons.com.
“Beer tourism is growing as an economic driver, and the Hershey Harrisburg Region is fortunate to have such a wide variety of breweries with unique tastes and atmospheres that can attract craft connoisseurs and casual tasters alike,” said VHH President & CEO Mary Smith. “Pairing the rise in interest for beer tourism with the current travel climate that trends to higher comfort levels in day trips or shorter overnight stays, the timing of this new beer trail experience sets up perfectly to provide an economic boost to breweries that were temporarily closed due to statewide Covid-19 mitigation efforts,” said Smith.
There are more than 400 craft breweries in Pennsylvania, more than double the number logged just five years ago. About 30 breweries operate in the Hershey Harrisburg Region. Plans for additional local breweries to open in the coming months, and ongoing expansion projects for current breweries provide evidence that Hershey & Harrisburg continues to grow as a craft beer destination.
The History of the Brew Barons
Each participating brewery has a unique identity crafted by the personalities of their staff and owners. “We knew it was important to give the entire trail a brand of its own,” said VHH Experience Development Director Jason Meckes. “We drew on the geographical assets of the Hershey Harrisburg Region and its natural “meeting point” between Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, and built in the tale of Brew Barons who loved to exchange stories and ideas over a pint of great beer,” said Meckes. “It’s relatable and fun, and we love the way the story mirrors the way people tend to enjoy craft beer; catching up with friends, telling stories, and making big plans,” he continued.
Participating Breweries & Tasting Locations
- Al's of Hampden/Pizza Boy Brewing Co.
- Boneshire Brew Works
- Ever Grain Brewing Co.
- Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant
- Lancaster Brewing Company - Harrisburg
- Liquid Noise Brewing Co.
- Mellow Mink Brewing Co.
- Mount Gretna Craft Brewery & Red Canoe Store
- Official BBQ/Pizza Boy Brewing Co.
- Rotunda Brew Pub
- Rubber Soul Brewing Co. (Coming Soon!)
- Spring Gate Brewery
- Tattered Flag Brewery and Still Works
- Tattered Flag Distillery and Lounge
- The Brewery at Hershey
- The Millworks Brewery
- The Vegetable Hunter Brewery
- The Watershed Pub (Coming soon!)
- Troegs Independent Brewing
- Zeroday Brewing Company (Reopening Soon!)
- Zeroday Outpost at Broad Street Market
The Brewers Association reports that 55 million adults visited U.S. craft breweries while traveling in 2019. The association’s latest data shows that Pennsylvania craft breweries ranked 2nd in the nation with more than $6.3 million in economic impact. PA ranks 2nd in production, brewing more than 3.6 million barrels in 2019.
Beer tourists typically travel in a party of 4, stay for at least one overnight, and spend an average of $252.38 per person per trip, including $35.17 per person per trip on beer sales (Bowers, Economic Impact of Beer Tourism in Kent County (2019)).
Health & Safety Precautions
Promotion of the Brew Barons Beer Trail will be an ongoing messaging effort to beer tourists that the Hershey Harrisburg Region is a destination rich in craft beer experiences. As Covid-19 mitigation continues around the world, VHH reminds visitors - whether their travel plans are for next week or next year - that the health of our community is our top priority.
Each brewery is operating with enhanced health & safety guidelines established by the PA Department of Health. Guests are asked to visit each brewery’s website for details specific to a certain location. Visit Hershey & Harrisburg encourages participating breweries and all business partners and guests to take the VHH Safe Together Pledge, a shared commitment where residents, workers, and visitors work together to show respect for one another and follow new safety guidelines designed to limit the spread of COVID-19.
Details on the safety pledge can be found at www.visithersheyharrisburg.org/safe-together.
Visit Hershey & Harrisburg is the official non-profit partnership-based Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) leading economic growth through destination sales, consumer marketing, public relations, and tourism development in Dauphin County, Pennsylvania. The organization, accredited by Destinations International since 2010, is committed to actively marketing the tourism assets in the Hershey & Harrisburg Region to business and leisure travelers both domestic and international. The bureau also leads regional sales efforts to attract meeting and event organizers, sporting event producers, and group tour leaders. For more info: VisitHersheyHarrisburg.org.