Forest City Brewers News and Headlines

Beer Competition Pre-Registration

Please pre-register your monthly Style/Open entries. Pre-Registration can be done by sending an email to In the email provide the following information.

First & Last name
Style or Open (or one for each)
Name of the beer style(s)

Monthly Meeting Podcasts

Did you miss a meeting or want to go back and relisten to a meeting you attended? All meetings will now be podcasted. Visit the Podcasts tab above to access any of the last 3 monthly meetings.

New BJCP Guidelines

The long awaited 2015 BJCP Guidelines have been release. The new guidlines are very different from the 2008 Guidelines. If anyone is thinking of taking the BJCP exams, they will start using the new guidelines in November 2015. For BJCP sanctioned competitions they may use either set of guidelines. Make sure you check with the competition organizer. Download the new 2015 BJCP Guidelines.

Illinois House Bill 630


So, what does this mean for homebrewers?
Homebrewers now have the following requirements:
* No one under 21 years of age may homebrew, and beer may not be sold at anytime.
* The Commission must regulate the activities outside the homebrewer's residence.
* A license must be obtained if beer is offered at a festival.
* Dram Shop Liability Insurance is required.
* Samples (at festivals only) may be given to consumers, at least 21 years of age, but no more than three 2 ounce samples to each consumer. Note: Previously, these festivals gave full size beers to basically anyone who asked, which is one of the reasons why the Commission shut them down.
* Homebrewers may not brew anywhere outside the home other than at a business at a fixed location that sells supplies and offers educational classes.
* Homebrewers may hold contests at a licensed premises; however, only judges (certified by a National Homebrewing Organization) may sample the beer. At no time may the homebrewers give their beer to anyone at a licensed premises other than a certified judge.

For more information. Go to the Illinois General Assembly website for details about the bill.

Midwest Area Events

Midwest Weekends: A comprehensive guide to 2016 craft beer festivals in the upper Midwest.

Great Lakes Brewing News: Great source for nearby events and trending beer business news.

National Events

Visit for comprehensive guide to 2016 craft beer festivals everywhere, year round.

American Craft Beer Week: Known as The Mother of all Beer Weeks, American Craft Beer Week celebrates craft brewers and craft beer culture in the US. It’s a national celebration across the US with events at a brewery near you! Date: May 16-22, 2016 Where: In brewpubs and small, independent craft breweries nationwide.

Savor: SAVOR is the main beer and food pairing event in the US! With 65 of the nation’s top independent craft brewers participating, this is where beer enthusiasts and foodies can interact directly with some of the greatest brewers and brewery owners in the world. Date: June 3-4, 2016 Where: Washington, D.C.

National Homebrewers Conference and Competition: Join hundreds of homebrewers at the national conference for amateur brewers. Education and fun combine for a great experience! Date: June 9-11, 2016 Where: Baltimore, Maryland

Great American Beer Festival: Three days, over 600 breweries and more than 3,000 beers to enjoy. 2014 will be the 34th year of the festival with nearly 50,000 people expected to attend. Purchase your tickets early, as the festival has sold out the past six years! Date: October 6-8, 2016 Where: Colorado Convention Center, Denver, COB

Beer In The News

Happy Hour Returns to Illinois
The Illinois state Senate has approved a bill that could loosen the state's notorious Happy Hour law.

Greg Hall Returns for Goose Island Alumni Brew
Goose Island is inviting back the brewers that made them great for a series of alumni beers to be served at their Clybourn Ave. Brew Pub. First up: Greg Hall who started with the brewery nearly three decades ago. Each beer in the series will be brewed on the pub's two-barrel system so stay tuned for release dates if you want to sample these sure to be world-class beers.