LI's craft brewers are united to celebrate their booming industry and give back to charity.

The annual celebration of all things craft beer on Long Island kicks off Friday with a Cask Ales Festival in Farmingdale and runs through May 20 with a slew of brew-related festivities.

LI beer week’s opening festival will be held at That Meetball Place in Farmingdale from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., with unlimited samplings of cask ales from 11 breweries and happy hour pricing on taps, wine and food.

The theme of LI Craft Beer Week 2018 is East meets West, and the cask ales at the Farmingdale festival will focus on Suffolk County breweries. The East End will be represented by Montauk Brewing and several North Fork breweries will be pouring, including Greenport Harbor Brewing, Jamesport Farm Brewery, Long Ireland Beer and Moustache Brewing. The fun will continue in Farmingdale on Saturday with a Town Takeover on Main Street, with opportunities to meet and greet brewers from many LI craft breweries. 

On the following weekend, the main events will shift to Suffolk County and the focus will be on Nassau County breweries. A Cask Ales Festival on May 18 at L.I. Pour House in Port Jeff Station will feature special cask ales from Oyster Bay Brewing, Garvies Point Brewing, Lithology Brewing and Long Beach Brewing Company. The celebration in Suffolk will continue on May 19 with a Town Takeover in Patchogue.

Long Island Craft Beer Week also provides an opportunity for craft beer lovers to give back to the community through the Craft Cares “Can for a Can” food drive. Limited-release cans of this year’s collaboration brew, Craft Cares Bi-Coastal IPA, will be available at participating breweries, beer bars and retailers in exchange for donating cans of food for Long Island Cares-The Harry Chapin Food Bank. 

Craft Cares Bi-Coastal IPA was a collaboration among 24 LI breweries along with local producers of malt and hops. The brew combines two popular beer styles, the West Coast IPA and New England IPA, using Cascade, Nugget and Tahoma hops from Condzella Farms in Wading River, Route 27 Hop Yard in Moriches and L.I. Hops in Riverhead. Bi-Coastal IPA was brewed at Fire Island Beer Co. in Bay Shore on March 20, then dry-hopped and canned on April 3, with canning donated by The Malt Man mobile canning services and labels by DWS Printing in Deer Park.

Dozens of events will take place during the 10-day celebration, including the chance to pick up a free commemorative pint glass and wrist band for exclusive offers throughout the year.

Details on all events for Long Island Craft Beer Week can be found at licbw.us.

Bernie Kilkelly is the editor and publisher of LIBeerGuide.com.

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