Upcoming festivals to offer a fun time

Jose Soto, Entertainment Editor

It’s often said that there isn’t much to do in El Paso, but that will soon be fallacy as three festivals, the Sun City Bacon Fest, the El Paso Burger and Craft Beer Fest and the Sun City Craft Beer Festival, come to the borderland. With these upcoming festivals catering to both young and adult populations, there won’t be an excuse to not have fun during the month of April.

Starting with the Sun City Bacon Fest at 11 a.m. on April 17 at the Union Plaza Entertainment District, El Pasoans will be able to enjoy one of America’s favorite side dishes. This event is particularly suitable for college students because admission is free.

Veronica Hernandez, live events manager at Townsquare Media, said the company knew events like Bacon Fest have been successful across the nation.

“We have seen events of this nature really take off across the country, being that we are foodies here in El Paso, we thought, why not try it here?” Hernandez said. “It sure did work out the first year and we expect an even better turnout this year.” Hernandez said her team requested menus from participating vendors in order to secure a variety of bacon items, which she said will include bacon-wrapped Oreos.

Vendors will be selling bacon-infused menu items from $2 to roughly $20. The Texas Federal Credit Union will be providing attendees with coins priced at $2 each. Coins must be used to purchase all items at the event. No cash will be accepted. VIP tickets are available for $25 in advance and $35 at the door. VIP ticket holders are granted four bacon samples valued at up to $6 and two drink tickets for your choice of beverage. VIP tickets also grants access to private bathrooms, which might come in handy after a day of heavy indulgence. Vendors will include Crave, Hillside Coffee, Malolam, Independent Burger, Stonewood Modern American Grill and The Garden.

“I think that events like this encourage community engagement,” Hernandez said. “Events like this provide family fun at a low cost. No monetary barriers create a great environment for anyone to enjoy a great event.”

The newest addition to the growing number of El Paso-based festivals is the El Paso Burger and Craft Beer Festival, which will take place starting at noon on April 30 at Cleveland Square Park. Cesar Alonso, organizer and founder of the event, said it’s been an “extensive route to get the event on its feet.”

“I always question why no one had ever done a burger fest in El Paso,” Alonso said. “Me and some partners traveled around to get information about how to make a burger festival happen. Mostly, we found that people love the food competition portion of the event, so our event here in El Paso will also include a legit food competition.”

Alonso said the price of attending is relatively low compared to other festivals. There are $5 pre-sale tickets available at elpasoburgerfest.com and $10 tickets at the gate. Children under the age of 12 go in for free.

“We wanted to make this as affordable as possible so that we can begin making a name for ourselves as a family-friendly event, which is why there is also a Kids Realm,” Alonso said. “We plan to continue this as an annual event and want it to grow.”

The Hoppy Monk, Crave, Burger Theory, El Chefe, Roof Top, Jonbalaya, Steve’Os, Just Fit Foods, Rulis’ International Kitchen and Ode Brewery will all be serving up their burgers at the event.

Beers from Alaskan Brewing Co., Breckenridge Brewery, Deep Ellum Brewing Co. and Deschutes Brewery will be available at the event. On it’s third year of operating as one of El Paso’s most anticipated festivals, the Sun City Craft Beer Festival will be moving from Cleveland Park to the El Paso Convention Center and will be both an indoor and outdoor event.

This year’s SCCBF will begin at noon to 8 p.m. on April 30. Local bands such as Chuco Soul Project will perform at the event, which will also have live, on-spot brewing. The event will feature more than 150 regional and national beer brands. General admission is $30, which includes ten samples of your choice of beer and a commemorative pint while supplies last.

For more information visit suncitycraftbeerfest.com. Jose Soto may be reached at [email protected]