Sixth annual St. Patricks Day Celebration is Saturday
SIKESTON -- With sunshine and slightly warmer temperatures in Saturday's forecast, organizers of the annual St. Patrick's Day Celebration in Downtown Sikeston say the event will be an ideal opportunity to venture outdoors and have some fun.
"This is one of spring's first outdoor festivals in the area, and I think people are ready to get outside. The weather is supposed to be decent so this will be one of the first years in a long time we've had nice weather," said Kathy Medley, who serves as the committee chair of the event and board member of Historic Downtown Sikeston.
Set for 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at Malone Park, located at the corner of Scott and Center streets, the event -- now in its sixth year -- will include beer sampling, music, a home brew competition, crafts and more.
Homebrewing continues to be a popular hobby, Medley said, adding first through third place finishes will be awarded medals and prizes.
Tickets are $12 per person for those who are 21 and older who plan to sample beer. Price includes a souvenir mug and beer samplings from participating vendors. Net proceeds benefit the Historic Downtown Sikeston revitalization projects.
Attendees will have the chance to sample homemade beer from brewmasters throughout the state.
"You've got some of the homebrew clubs like the Hop Heads of Southeast Missouri who attend the event together," Medley said. "We have people coming from St. Louis, Poplar Bluff and Illinois for this event."
In addition to sampling the home brew competition entries, attendees can also sample from the five vendors slated to be in attendance: Kohlfeld, Bob Ralph Distributing Co., Bluff City Beer Co., Minglewood Brewery, Jackson Street Brew Co., Samuel Adams, Schlafly and 4Hands Brewing Co.
Sikeston native Stuart Matthews, owner of Minglewood Brewery in Cape Girardeau, said this will be Minglewood's third year attending the festival.
"As you know we're in Cape Giradeau, serving handmade and craft made house beer, and what this event does is it helps the craft beer movement branch out a little further outsid of the larger cities," Matthews said.
Craft brewing has been popular on the East and West Coasts for years, Matthews said.
"People in the Midwest are still learning about, and what the Sikeston festival does is it raises awareness about craft brewing," Matthews said.
For the local home brewers, the competition allows the winner to have bragging rights, Matthews said. But most of all, it's allowing them to share their craft with others.
"These beer festivals promote craft beer, and if you're willing to expand your pallet and try something new, there's a lot of really good beer out there," Matthews said.
The local band, "Used & Reused" featuring Gary Hampton is scheduled to perform.
"We will have several food trucks so there will be more types of food this year than typical. The Eagles Club will have their fish sandwiches, and we will also have brauts," Medley said.
Attendees are encouraged to dress in St. Patrick's Day-themed attire, Medley said.
"There's one attendee who who comes dressed as a leprechaun every year," she noted.
Saturday's event is the second biggest fundraiser for Downtown Sikeston, Medley said, adding the fall wine festival is its biggest fundraiser. The money raised goes right into Histroic Downtown Sikeston improvements, she added.
"It's a great event if somebody is wanting to sample different craft beers, but even if you don't drink beer, it's a fun time," she said.
Saturday's event is pet-friendly and family-friendly, Medley said.
"It's a fun and festive atmosphere -- even in the rainy years," Medley said. "Last year it drizzled most of the day, and we still had a good fundraiser."
For those who want to get an earlier start to their day, the Sikeston Department of Public Safety is organizing its annual St. Patty's 5K Run for Special Olympics Missouri beginning at 9 a.m. at Legion Park, 115 E. Front St., in Downtown Sikeston. Registration, which is $30, begins at 8 a.m. Proceeds support the Sikeston Special Olympics.