Written by: Molly Lautamo
Thirsty beer lovers caused a small traffic jam on Graham Hill Road this past Friday, May 1st on their way to the New Bohemian Brewing Company’s first annual Spring Beer Fest.
Families, couples, and groups of friends gathered in the Santa Cruz Mountains at Roaring Camp to enjoy beer, food, live music, and good company until the last rays of sun disappeared below the tree line.
The warm spring evening, paired with good company and good beer, erased any lingering thoughts of the work week and the slow drive up to the e
vent. Once at the festival, the only thoughts were of filling your stein and dancing the night away to rowdy German tunes — hopefully while wearing lederhosen.
May Day Nu Bo Style
About two hundred people celebrated May Day this year with Nu Bo (the brewery’s catchy nickname) over tasty beer, a hearty German meal by Friend in Cheeses Jam Company, and live music by the Internationals and the Santa Cruz Mountain String Trio.
Men and women of all ages (21 and above that is) cheerfully waited in line to have glass Nu
Bo steins filled with three new beers tapped especially for the celebration:
Czech Mate (a dry hopped Czech pilsner), Abbey Knight (a Belgian double), and the Springbock (a traditional May Day release called a Maibock).
Family Fun & Dancing in Dirndls
The folks at Friend in Cheeses Jam Company piled plates with generous scoops of potato salad, curried coleslaw, and two types of sausage. Bowls of sauerkraut, hot peppers — requiring large swigs of beer after every bite — and three types of house made jam added tang, heat, and fruity flavors to the meal.
The May Day festivities spilled out of Roaring Camp’s Bret Harte Hall onto a grassy lawn surrounded by oaks, pines, and redwoods, featuring a yellow and white Maypole in the middle. Young children screamed with glee in the bounce house and tossed frisbees on the lawn while their parents ate dinner in the late evening sun. Underneath picnic tables a few lucky dogs lounged in the grass, drooling over the smell of bratwurst wafting off their humans’ plates.
Back inside, beneath rustic chandeliers and a 32-foot high redwood ceiling, red-cheeked men donning lederhosen and laughing women dressed in dirndls danced to German tunes. Every so often, the whole crowd would erupt in a traditional German chant led by the Internationals. If you’ve ever been to an Oktoberfest celebration, you know the one — it ends with a hearty “Hi! Hi! Hi!”.
There’s Still Time to Celebrate Spring
If you attended the spring beer fest you can rest assured you’ve properly celebrated the spring and if you missed it, you can still celebrate at Nu Bo’s brewery and taproom on 41st with the three new beers served at the event.
There won’t be a Maypole or a live band in full traditional German costume, but there will be good beer, friendly brewers, and a fun community of good people just looking to share a drink with friends — old and new alike.
Learn more at nubobrew.com
Molly Lautamo is a content strategist and writer who loves hiking in the woods with her cattle dog, going on bouldering adventures,andactively exploring the local food and beer scene in Santa Cruz. To check out more of Molly’s writing, visit mollylautamo.com or follow her on Twitter @mlautamo.