As a lifelong traveler, I've always appreciated the chance to sample regional cuisine , but as an adult traveler, I'm also grateful for the opportunity to taste regional wines and beers. Although I've blogged about Michigan wineries  and historic taverns  in previous posts, I realize that I've never focused specifically on breweries or, for that matter, beer festivals.
Although my husband, Dan, and I love to visit regional microbreweries – from the Abita Brewery  in Abita Springs, Louisiana, to the Right Brain Brewery  in Traverse City, Michigan – I admit that beer festivals offer an even better, more convenient, and often more fun-filled way for residents and travelers to sample a variety of regional brews all at once. Lucky for beer lovers, America plays host to a slew of beer festivals – all throughout the year.
Of course, many beer lovers find the summer months a particularly nice time to visit beer-friendly towns, and fortunately, there's no shortage of popular beer festivals – too many, in fact, to list in this post. Next month, for instance, travelers will flock to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for Philly Beer Week  (June 1-10); Portland, Oregon, for PDX Beer Week  (June 7-17); Rochester, New York, for Rochester Real Beer Week  (June 15-23); and Athens, Ohio, for the Ohio Brew Week Festival  (June 22-30). Later in the summer, you might also venture to Ypsilanti, Michigan, for the Michigan Brewers Guild Summer Beer Festival  (July 27-28), which highlights more than 300 different beers from over 60 Michigan-based breweries, from the Frankenmuth Brewery  to the North Peak Brewing Company . Another lively event is the Savannah Craft Brew Fest  (August 31-September 2), a Labor Day weekend celebration featuring nearly 150 different craft brews in historic Savannah, Georgia. Besides providing a variety of craft beers for tasting and purchasing, such festivals often feature live concerts, special food and beer pairings, craft beer launches, and other beer-related activities, such as brewing competitions.
For even more beer-lovin' events, consult the online Beer Festival Calendar  – just be advised that, as with any third-party website, some information might be outdated, so be sure to research the festivals you're favoring beforehand.
That said, which beer fest will you be headed to next?
As always, I’m open to ideas for future posts. If you have any suggestions, burning questions, or destinations that you’d like me to explore in greater detail, please comment below or contact me via laura [at] wanderingsoles [dot] com.
Disclosure: While I occasionally accept free or discounted travel assistance when it coincides with my editorial goals, my opinion is never for sale, which means that everything written in my American Nomad blog and Moon travel guides is my unbiased reflection of the things that I see, do, and experience while traveling across the United States.
Photo of Frankenmuth's Lager Mill, about a mile from the Frankenmuth Brewery / Text © 2012 Laura Martone
Laura Martone is Moon’s American Nomad  and the author of Moon Michigan , Moon Florida Keys , Moon Baja RV Camping , and the upcoming Moon New Orleans , which will be published in September 2012.