Suds & Snow started ten years ago in the back of Timber Ridge Resort. The festival has continued to grow each year, setting itself apart from others it’s unique atmosphere. This year’s event, held on Saturday, was perhaps the best yet.
Originally organized solely by Timber Ridge, Troy Daily of Create TC took over organizing the event two years ago and aims to continue to build the festival.
“It started out as 25 people and continued to grow over time. We wanted to make it a real festival and something unique to the area,” said Daily.
As “the ultimate party in the woods” Suds & Snow distinguishes itself from most beer festivals with its unique venue, atmosphere, and set up. This year’s festival attracted roughly 2,500 people.
“No other festival is like this. Most are in parking lots. Back here, we don’t have tents, buildings, or infrastructure,” said event organizer Troy Daily.
The festival was exclusively outside and exemplified everything that is Northern Michigan. First of all, in order to get to the festival, attendees had to trek through the woods of Timber Ridge Resort to a clearing bordered in breweries and food vendors.
“This one is fun. It’s nice and laid back,” said Dark Horse representative Haley Davis.
Live music from local musicians, bonfires built in the snow, extravagant food necklaces, and an ‘80s ski bum theme set this event apart from others. With two different sections of the festival, local favorites G-Snacks performed in one area while 2BaysDJs kept music going in the other. Bonfires and the long-awaited March sun kept everyone warm throughout the afternoon.
A large part of Suds & Snow is its exuberant atmosphere. The setting in the woods is much more relaxed than usual, and attendees are encouraged to wear outlandish outfits.
“We really are aiming for this to be the highlight microbrew event of Traverse City,” said Daily.
At most festivals, people come prepared with food necklaces filled with prepackaged snacks like pretzels and string cheese — these are not enough for Suds & Snow; this festival requires Hawaiian rolls, hot dogs, and your own roasting stick.
Over twenty breweries were present at this year’s festival, including: Founders, Stormcloud Brewing Company, Blackrocks Brewing, and Dark Horse Brewing Company. Tandem Ciders and Blake’s Hard Cider were also present. MI Grille and Daily Blend were there with a wide selection of food including a pig roast, hamburgers, hot dogs, stir fry, and tacos.
Next year’s Suds & Snow will take place at the beginning of March, and is sure to be even more memorable. You can visit http://sudsandsnowtc.com/ for updates and more information.
Photography: Kaitlyn Rickman