ROCKINGHAM — After having to be pushed back a week due to Hurricane Ian, the Richmond County Chamber of Commerce is gearing up its annual Hoptoberfest craft beer and chicken wing festival at Rockingham Dragway.
This year’s event will feature more than a dozen brews on tap, according to Chamber President Kristi Richardson King. While most will be craft beers from across North Carolina, there will be other domestics available.
Many of the breweries have been staples of Hoptoberfest, like Southern Pines Brewing Co. and Dirtbag Ales out of Hope Mills.
Other Tar Heel breweries include:
- Asheville – Wicked Weed Brewing, Hi-Wire Brewing, Highland Brewing, New Belgium Brewing Company*
- Brevard – Oskar Blues Brewery
- Charlotte – NoDa Brewing Company
- Chapel Hill – Gizmo Brew Works
- Durham – Bull City Ciderworks
- Fayetteville – Gaston Brewing Company, Mash House Brewing Company, Heckler Brewing Co.
- Fuquay-Varina – Aviator Brewing Company
- Kinston – Mother Earth Brewing
- Morganton – Catawba Brewing Company
- Southern Pines – Hatchett Brewing Co.
- Whitsett – Red Oak Brewing
- Wilmington – TRU Colors Brewing
- Winston-Salem – Foothills Brewing
(*New Belgium is based out of Fort Collins, Colorado, but has a secondary “main” location in Asheville.)
Terrapin Beer Co. of Athens, Georgia, and is also on the list.
“We appreciate the collaboration with our partners at Richmond County Tourism, Perdue and Rockingham Dragway, as well as county management, as we transitioned Hoptoberfest to this weekend due to weather last week,” King said Wednesday evening. “We are looking forward to welcoming guests to Richmond county from all over North Carolina and other neighboring states to the premier craft beer and wing festival of the Sandhills.”
King said there were nine teams currently signed up for the chicken wing contest, but the Chamber is looking to add a few more between now and Saturday.
Cash prizes will be given out to the first- through fourth-place and People’s Choice winners.
Any teams interested in getting in on the action are encouraged to contact King or Jonathon Lewis at the Chamber by calling 910-895-9058 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
King said one of the requests after last year’s event was for a band playing ‘90s music, so Charlotte-based Gump Fiction will be taking the stage.
Hoptoberfest serves as a fundraiser for the Chamber, with proceeds going toward initiatives and programs offered throughout the year, as well as scholarships.
General admission tickets will still be available at the gate, which opens at 4 p.m. VIP ticket holders, as well as those attending the annual Raffle at the Rock, can get in at 3 p.m.
“We encourage those that haven’t’ bought yet to come see what this community has to offer,” King said.
There are also still tickets available for the raffle, with prizes including ATVs, firearms and cash.
Proceeds from the raffle go to the Richmond Economic Development Corporation, a nonprofit “that has the sole responsibility of fostering economic growth in Richmond County.” The funds will be used for the corporation’s shell building program, industrial park development and maintenance.