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Brad Harris brews beer for charity. Dennyse Harris is an event planner who specializes in retreats for women. This spring, the Comox Valley couple is combining their powers to create the ultimate five-day getaway for craft beer lovers.
The inaugural Craft Beer & Wilderness Retreat is slated for June at the renowned Nootka Sound Resort, near Tahsis.
“The retreat is a way for us to combine our passions, bring people together, connect with nature and celebrate craft beer,” says Dennyse. “And it all takes place in a luxurious and spectacular West Coast setting. Whether you’re an established craft brewer or just thinking about getting your home brew on, you’re going to have a fabulous time!”
The all-inclusive five-day event takes place June 9 to 13, 2018, at the well-appointed resort in Galiano Bay on Vancouver Island’s wild west coast. Participants will get to brew beer with top B.C. brewers, as well as enjoy craft beer and gourmet food pairings, rare beers, tap-side beer chats and formal seminars.
Aside from beer-related activities, other items on the itinerary include yoga on the dock, kayaking and SUP boarding, informational lectures on the fascinating surroundings and even a half-day boat tour to historic Yuquot (Friendly Cove) on Nootka Island. Participants will also have the option of chartering a boat and going fishing with Nootka Marine Adventures.
The buzz in the craft brewing community is rampant, says Brad, who adds that they already have brewers lining up for future retreats. This year’s featured brewers include Brent Mills, head brewer and co-founder of Four Winds Brewery in Delta, B.C.; Michael and Karen Kuzyk, co-founders of Category 12 Brewing on the Saanich Peninsula near Victoria; and Cédric Dauchot, brewer and owner of Powell River’s Townsite Brewing.
“They’re all so talented, and we’re thrilled to have these artists share their knowledge with our guests,” says Brad. “The great thing about making craft beer is that no matter what your experience level, there’s always something to learn and share. This is a rare opportunity to talk shop with some of the best in the business.”
To ensure that the needs and interests of both newbies and experts are accommodated, all scheduled brew sessions will have three parallel streams – extract brewing in a bucket, inexpensive all-grain brewing and full commercial pilot-system brewing.
“While the beer aspect is going to be phenomenal – not to mention the resort’s gourmet food – we’re just as excited to showcase and introduce people to this absolutely stunning area,” says Dennyse. “It’s a celebration of nature and craft beer – it’s uniquely Canadian and yet there’s currently nothing else like it in Canada.”
The cost of the five-day all-inclusive retreat is $1,999 (plus taxes) per person, although a $400 early bird discount drops the price to just $1,599 before April 15. Private bus transportation to the resort from either Campbell River Airport or Comox Airport is included. For more information or to reserve a spot, visit www.craftbeerandwilderness.com.