Bent Paddle to Celebrate 10 Years with Biggest Festiversary Yet

Has it been 10 years already? Time sure flies when you are drinking (and making!) good beer! On May 20th, Bent Paddle Brewing Co. will celebrate 10 years of business! During their decade of operations, the craft brewery has grown from the original 4 co-founders to a team of 47 beloved employees, crafted over 250 unique beers, supported over 600 non-profits, and won over 65 beer and business awards along the way. 

“It’s been a wild ride over the last 10 years,” says Bent Paddle co-founder Karen Tonnis. “Now we are so excited to be celebrating it all with all the Paddlers who have supported us along this journey with Festiversary on May 20th!”

Festiversary 2023 will take place from 2-8 p.m. on Saturday, May 20. Bent Paddle’s annual outdoor anniversary party takes over two square blocks surrounding the brewery and taproom in the Lincoln Park Craft District neighborhood of Duluth. There will be two stages of live music with a fantastic 100% Duluth lineup featuring headliner Charlie Parr, specialty beer crafted just for the event, tons of food options from local food trucks, and family friendly activities and shenanigans throughout.  

“Bent Paddle’s 10th anniversary Festiversary is a celebration of our community, our loyal customers, who we call Paddlers, and our love of sharing craft beer. We are excited to showcase our lineup of specialty and pilot beers, and to offer a range of fun activities for all ages. It’s our way to kick off summer and say thank you for an amazing 10 years to our community,” says fellow Co-Founder Laura Mullen.

The celebration is known for bringing in big name acts for a full day of great music. This year features an all Duluth music lineup with some of the biggest bands in the Twin Ports:

  • 2:15-3:00p – Woodblind (w/ special guests) | Cedar Bound Stage
  • 3:00-4:00p – The Gemstones honoring AfroGeode | Main Stage
  • 4:00-4:45p – Feeding Leroy | Cedar Bound Stage
  • 4:45-5:00p – Community Toast to 10 Years!!! | Main Stage
  • 5:00-6:00p – HEADLINER Charlie Parr | Main Stage
  • 6:00-7:15p – New Salty Dog | Cedar Bound Stage
  • 7:15-8:00p – Big Wave Dave & The Ripples | Main Stage

Beer enthusiasts will be delighted to taste Bent Paddle’s Festiversary beer lineup, featuring the first tapping of the brewery’s special 10 Year Anniversary Imperial Stout. The brewery is also crafting several one-off specialty beers for the event. Expect playful spin-offs of fan favorites including an Orange-Berry Kanu, a Campfire S’mores Black Ale, and a Canadian Martini Lager, the brewery’s Light Lager garnished with green olives.  For fans of vintage and rare beers, make a stop at the Barrel Aged Hut for Double Shot Double Black vintage releases dating back to 2016 as well as Extra Baked pasty stout with chocolate, vanilla & coconut. Casks inside the Production Brewery include Tequila Lime Light Lager, Poblano Jalapeño Black Ale, and Old Fashioned 14° Degree Amber Ale.  

“We went a little overboard with the beers, but it’s our 10 year anniversary so we decided to just go for it,” mentioned brewery Co-Founder Colin Mullen. The Frost River Festibear will also make its annual debut. Historically, taking a selfie with the giant stuffed bear has become an annual tradition for event goers. Other quirky fest activities include tarot readings by The Northwoods Witch and dancing in a silent disco with an emotional support chicken courtesy of Locally Laid Egg Co.

While beers are a definitive highlight of the event, kids will be having just as much fun as the adults. Families with children will enjoy the Frost River Kids Area filled with activities ranging from the fan-favorite climbing wall, to snowboard demos by Damage Boardshop, to adoptable puppies! “Festiversary is a perfect opportunity to bring your family and friends for a fun-filled day at Bent Paddle. Our music lineup, kid-friendly activities, and delicious food options will make this a memorable event for everyone,” says final Co-Founder Bryon Tonnis.

Foodies will be delighted with the Festiversary’s diverse selection of food vendors ranging from artisanal waffles to wood fired pizzas to inventive hot dogs. Mama Roots Food Truck will be serving all vegan dishes, Howard’s Que will be cooking up authentic neighborhood BBQ, and Oasis Del Norte will be serving authentic Mexican tacos, nachos, and burritos just to start. 

Looking back at the last 10 years Laura Mullen says “It’s been a lot of work, but we are so happy we started a business in my hometown of Duluth, and even more so in the wonderful community of Lincoln Park. There are moments everyday when we see people out in the town buying a 6-pack, ordering a pint of Bent Paddle in a restaurant, or wearing some of our branded apparel and it lets us know that we are doing something right.” 

Festiversary tickets are $30 (+ tax) in advance online and in the taproom until closing time on Friday night May 19th and $35 at the gate day-of and include admission, access to all the live music and vendors, a commemorative pint glass, and the first pour of beer is free! Kids under 14 are free and folks 14-20 plus designated driver tickets are $15.  

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