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Qingdao cheers its beers at festival

By Yuan Shenggao | (China Daily ) | 2019-07-25

Beer lovers will gather in East China's coastal city of Qingdao on July 26 to raise a glass to the 29th Qingdao International Beer Festival, where over 1,400 different brews from across the globe will be available to sample.

Set in West Coast New Area's aptly named Golden Beach Beer City, the 24-day annual event will run until Aug 18.

The 29th iteration of the annual festival will boost Qingdao's efforts in developing into an open, modern and fashionable global city, according to event organizers.

An international beer festival alliance, formed by organizers of Qingdao International Beer Festival, Oktoberfest in Munich, the Great American Beer Festival in Denver and Festival of Beer in Toronto, will be established during the event.

The alliance will create an exchange and cooperation platform to promote tourism among members, boost the sustainability of the festivals and support development in the brewing industry. There will also be summits and expos to promote industrial development.

More than 1,400 types of beer from brands such as the Netherlands' Heineken, Canada's Russell Brewing Company, Spain's Er Boqueron, Denmark's Carlsberg and South Korea's Jeju will be available across nine halls.

Not to be left out, China's own Tsingtao, which is brewed in Qingdao, will also be available.

Visitors will be able to sample a huge variety of beers from across the world, from pilsners and pale ales to lagers, stouts and porters, including offerings from Qingdao's own Langyatai Group.

Phoenix Bar Street, which serves craft beer in West Coast New Area, will be a gathering place for craft beer fans. The street, opening to the public on June 12, has more than 30 bars offering a wide range of craft beers. There are also tea houses, book stores, cigar bars and platforms set up to demonstrate different cultural and creative products.

A float parade, the largest in scale in the beer festival's history, will mark the grand opening of the 2019 festival on July 26, according to organizers. Nineteen custom-designed and decorated vehicles, funded by key businesses such as the Qingdao Port, Tsingtao Beer and China Railway Group, will entertain visitors. As in previous years, the Golden Beach Beer City will host a bevy of light, firework and music shows to entertain attendees as they soak up their beer and fine food during the festival period.

Organizers revealed that more than 400 cultural performances and activities will take place during the 24-day event including sports competitions, concerts and gaming events.

Chinese actor Huang Xiaoming, who was born in Qingdao, is the ambassador of the beer festival.

Global performance groups from Munich, Denver and Toronto will stage a series of shows for visitors.

Last year, 170 drones were used to create several wonderful performances during the festival period. In 2019, even more drones will be used in the performances, organizers said.

The festival will be an ideal place for families to visit with many activities suitable for both children and adults. A playground, covering 10,000 square meters, where kids can experience a wind tunnel and play with remote control aircraft, will be set up. There will also be demonstration and interactive areas for people to learn more about aerospace.

A total of 450 volunteers will be available to provide support to visitors during the festival.

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Left: A craft beer experience center will open to visitors during the 2019 Qingdao International Beer Festival. Center: Crowds gather at the annual festival that has become a major attraction for locals and visitors alike. Right: Revelers enjoy the festival under its slogan of "Qingdao toasts the world". Photos Provided To China Daily

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A spectacular night view of the Golden Beach Beer City in West Coast New Area.Yuan Fuxia/for China Daily