A test to gauge public interest for a future beer garden at Canalside will occur today and Sunday at the Buffalo Maritime Festival on the waterfront.
The experiment will be sponsored by the Liberty Hound bar and restaurant, one of the proprietors under consideration by Erie Canal Harbor Development Corp. to open a beer garden and restaurant next year at the former Memorial Auditorium site.
An array of ale offerings – from pumpkin, Octoberfest, amber, India pale ale and blueberry – will be among the local brews being offered, as well as Belgian-style white beer.
“We’re featuring all New York State craft beers. That’s the approach we’ve taken with our proposal,” said Mike Shatzel, Liberty Hound’s co-owner. “We’re trying to celebrate the resurgence of New York state breweries – those here and others opening up in the next year or two.”
Upstate beer makers Ommegang Brewery, Captain Lawrence Brewing and Ithaca Beer Co. will be on hand alongside Ellicottville Brewing Co., Southern Tier Brewing and three Buffalo companies: Community Beer Works, Flying Bison and Labatt.
The craft beer and barrel tastings will be accompanied by live music each night featuring Rockaz, Folk Faces, Geno McManus and DJ Spooky Business.
Other entertainment will include tours and cruises on the tall ships, Saturday night fireworks, trivia contests and improv comedy, movie showings, food trucks and other vendors.
Shatzel said he hopes the public will provide feedback.
Beer garden hours are 4 to 11 p.m. today, noon to 11 p.m. Saturday and noon to 8 p.m. Sunday.
For a full schedule of tours and events at the Maritime Festival, visit www.canalsidebuffalo.com/buffalo-maritime-festival.