Salida Brewers Rendezvous Campout
Each July, a group of Brew Brothers members head out to Salida for a weekend of camping, drinking, and festivities surrounding the Brewers Rendezvous beer festival.
This year, camping starts on Friday, July 7 and wraps up Sunday, July 9. There’s a cover charge of $20/adult to cover costs for things like porta potties, food, ice, etc. Reserve your spot and purchase tickets in the Brew Brothers shop by July 1.
You’re responsible for buying your own Brewer’s Rendezvous festival ticket ($40 for general admission this year). Traditionally, club members dress up – this year’s theme is Spaced! Bring your favorite alien, cosmonaut, space cowboy, or Wookie costume to join in on the fun.
There are no amenities other than the rented porta potties, the beauty of Colorado, and the Arkansas River. It’s a pack-it-in pack-it-out experience. See the list below of what you’ll need to be prepared.
The campout is open to club members as well as family and friends. Kids are free. It’s a family friendly event, as long as you have an open-minded family! However, you are responsible for the behavior of the people you invite. Please keep your belligerent-after-drinking friends at home.
Directions to Campsite
We’re setting up on public BLM land, not an established campground. It’s a “land-grab” for a place to camp. Take the directions with you! Although there is no address to Google, here is a map that attempts to highlight the turn off.
- On Hwy 50, heading west into Salida, just before you get to town, you will see the 4 Seasons RV Park on the right side (it’s just east of the intersection of Hwy. 50 and 291.) This is the only place you can Google — if you use the satellite view you will be able to see the rest.
- Make the first right after the RV park onto County Road 102, which goes off to the north. The road is between mile markers 223 and 224. If you see the 7-11 you have gone too far.
- You know you’ve turned onto the correct road if you are immediately on a bridge crossing the river. Go 0.25 mile, staying to the left of the stockyards up ahead. GO SLOWLY! The road is not 4-wheel drive, but it has its moments.
- After 0.25 mile, you’ll reach some railroad tracks. Turn right along the tracks. In 0.2 mile the road forks. Take the right fork. About 0.15 mile further up the road, there’s a clearing overlooking the RV park. We will be camping in the clearing near the river.
Look for Brew Brothers signs after the RV park. We’ll try to illuminate them after dark with solar lights.
Schedule of Events
- The porta potties arrive (for real)!
- The Advance Beer Festival Assault Team (ABFAT) will arrive, secure the spot, and begin setup.
- Some people will drink beer.
- People will arrive early Friday, and set up the beer tent, kitchen tent, and other pop-ups for shade and/or rain protection. Others will continue to arrive all afternoon and evening.
- Some people go out for a mountain bike ride during the day.
- Games such as Baggo, Ladder Ball, Washers etc. will be set up. We need a volunteer to help organize the games. Email our organizer if you can help: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Some people will drink beer.
- Dinner is open. Some people cook their own, some venture into Salida to eat at Amica’s or another restaurant. The camp kitchen will have a grill available. It’s better to keep it simple, such as something to grill and a pre-made salad and chips. You must provide your own pots, pans, and utensils. If you leave a dirty pot in the kitchen, the kitchen crew reserves the right to throw it away. Clean up after yourself!
- A large party will ensue, which will include a sampling of many homebrews, a “People’s Choice” competition; specialty bottles and even some distilled spirits have been known to appear. Some party ’til near dawn. If you expect to sleep, bring earplugs.
- Try to remember this is a marathon, not a sprint. It’s considered a ‘party foul’ to be sick at the beer festival! And the children will be laughing at you!
- The Bloody Mary Bar: Some desire it and some require it! You can’t drink all day, unless you start at sunrise.
- The coffee bar
- Fuel — some call it a “Big Burrito Breakfast”, some call it a “Drinking Base.” It’s everything you want to build a breakfast burrito as big as your head!! Coffee included.
- The construction of the submarine sandwiches starts as the cleanup of breakfast happens. Assembly line prep for 100+ sandwiches.
- Some people will drink beer.
- Shuttles to the Brewer’s Rendezvous! It starts at one.
- Get lunch or snacks at the concessions in the festival.
- Most people will drink beer.
- Submarine Sandwich Dinner
- Some people will continue to drink beer… but usually not for long.
- Some people will fall down, sleep, and then get up and… drink more beer!
- Coffee only (bring your own breakfast foods, if you’ll need it)
- Break camp. The more people that help the faster it goes. Try not to leave this task for the few that also set it all up.
Pack the Essentials
We’re camping in the dirt on BLM we’ve staked out for the weekend. Other than a few group activities, you’re responsible for your own supplies. Here’s a checklist to help you plan:
- All tent or RV camping stuff. And don’t forget your pillow!
- Camp chair. Some people take one down to the festival as well
- Coffee cup. You have one, I know you do. Put it in your car. We don’t wash your cups. You do
- Unbreakable beer cup — plastic or Tervis or stainless steel or leather. Sure, it tastes better in glass. Get over it, we are camping. We’ll have some plastic cups, but the less trash the better. We have to haul out all of our recycling and trash!
- Food for Friday night and Sunday morning (if you eat in camp) as well as for Saturday if you and your guests aren’t participating in the group meals.
- Money: The festival is $35. They take credit cards, but that line is usually longer so cash gets you to the beer more quickly. Also bring cash for food during the festival and tip for the shuttle driver (recommended $5).
- Water: 5 gallons to contribute to the group for cooking and dishes, and your own drinking water. It will be hot; watch your kids and each other for signs of dehydration.
- Non-alcoholic beverages and ice for your personal coolers. You will need a lot of ice. Block lasts longer, but is harder to put in your Bloody Mary.
- Earplugs: Some people like to party hearty, if you aren’t one of them, these might help you get your beauty sleep.
- Beer! Bottles and kegs are welcome, but bring your own keg and/or jockey box supplies.
- Real shoes for the camping area. There are stickers and thorns in the area, as well as critters. Flip flops are fine for the festival, if you wish
- Space gear! We want all club members to dress up so that our group is recognizable at the Rendezvous!
- Sunscreen and insect repellent.
There is a 7-11 nearby and a Walmart in town, so don’t panic if you forget something.
We need the following donations
Can you lend us any of the following? Contact our organizer, Elizabeth at email@example.com.
- Folding tables or pop-up canopies for sun/rain protection
- Goodies to share are always appreciated
- Jockey Box? I know we have a couple coming
- Extra cooler for the subs
- Enormous restaurant-sized skillets or griddles
- Fire extinguishers
What we’ll provide
- Stoves, cookware, cooking utensils, cutlery. We’ll have 2 or 3 large camp stoves and some smaller Coleman stoves, all of that basic stuff. Don’t worry about it unless you need your fancy-ass espresso maker…
- Propane, except for your own stove, if you ignore the above item.
- Ice for the common areas, the jockey boxes, and group food coolers will be provided
Let’s make note that there will NOT be any campfires or fireworks allowed, assuming the fire ban will still be effect. Only propane stoves/ lights (or battery powered) will be allowed. The ban also states that there can be no outdoor smoking, except in such places as the smoking areas are clear of combustible materials.
We’ll set up a designated smoking area with metal containers filled with cat litter that’s tarp off and cleared of all combustible materials. Otherwise, all smoking must be inside of your vehicle. This includes cigarettes, cigars, pipes and those “other” smoking materials.
With a group as large as ours, the rangers and police will likely stop by to make sure we’re not being stupid.
Pack It Out
- Leave excess and unnecessary packaging at home (new flashlight in those big plastic overkill packages, for instance.)
- Be prepared to collect and take home your own “clean” trash – things like plastic and glass beverage bottles, that can be recapped and stowed in your vehicle.
- Empty beer bottles. We’ll have some boxes to collect empty bottles, which attendees can take home.
- Recycling – We will have a recycling container for other glass and plastic waste. It will be green (Get it?) and located in the beer tent.
- We will have a trash container for all other trash. It will be by the kitchen tent. Lets try and keep it reasonable. Think before tossing it in here.
Heading to 7-11 for a Gatorade? See if you can grab a small amount of trash and give it to 7-11 while you are there.
Frequently Asked Questions
1) Are kids allowed at the Brewers Rendezvous?
Most people bring their kids to the festival. Some breweries offer a root beer free to kids and designated drivers. Concessions sell all the standard fair foods. There’s also a big playground adjacent to the beer tent area. We usually pick a central area and throw down blankets and chairs, so parents can take turns sitting with little ones while their spouse goes for a beer. NOTE: the Arkansas River flows through both the campground and the festival grounds, so those of you with smaller kids do need to supervise!
2) What about dogs at the campground and festival?
This is a harder question. We don’t prohibit dogs but they are probably best left at home. In the past we have had very few dogs. It gotten brutally hot at the campsite some years. Are you going to leave your dog alone at camp? One Brew Brother has a well ventilated RV that he parks in a shady spot by the festival with extra fans running inside, leaves ice water and checks on his animal frequently.