Historic site volunteer Graham MacDonnell, Tony Dewald, of Trading Post, and John Mitchell, who is credited with creating the craft brewing industry in B.C., were at the recent launch of the 1867 brew that is part of the Fort Langley Beer and Food Festival.

Beer and food celebrated in Fort Langley’s newest festival

Fort Langley has a new festival devoted to craft beer and food.

A toast to local eats, local hops and Canada’s 150th birthday happens at the inaugural Fort Langley Beer and Food Festival on May 20.

Hosted by Trading Post Brewing Company, the first-annual festival is bringing together 18 craft breweries from the Lower Mainland and the Fraser Valley, as well as local food and wine vendors and entertainment. The festival takes place at the Fort Langley National Historic Site.

“We want everyone to know about the abundance of options we have here in the Fraser Valley,” Trading Post co-founder and general manager Lance Verhoeff said. “Supporting local is such an important thing to do for our community to thrive. It’s also a great feeling knowing that the food and beer you’re enjoying was made right here in our backyard.”

British Columbia’s craft beer industry is growing, and the goal of this festival is to highlight the efforts of breweries in this region.

Four Winds Brewing Co from Delta, Twin Sails Brewing from Port Moody, Hathi Brewing from Abbotsford and Central City Brewers + Distillers from Surrey among others will be there to share their beer and tell their stories.

“There’s a real sense of community with all the breweries, and not just here in the Fraser Valley, but throughout BC,” Verhoeff said. “We’re all working together towards a common goal, which is to make good beer.”

Besides sampling the Fraser Valley’s finest, festival-goers will enjoy live music and items from food trucks. Those attending can wander the palisade, voting for their favourite dishes and beers.

A pop-up liquor store will be on-site. A shuttle will bring people from Vancouver to the festival.

As part of Canada’s 150th celebrations, there’s free admission to the Fort Langley National Historic Site during 2017.

Tickets are available for those 19 and older with proceeds donated to the annual Brewing Lab scholarship at Kwantlen Polytechnic University. Set up by Trading Post, the scholarship is named after John Mitchell, who is considered to be the grandfather of craft beer in Canada.

The event runs noon to 5 p.m. Get tickets online at fortlangley.beer/tickets. There’s also social media feeds on the festival on Twitter (FortBeerFest), Facebook and Instagram (fortlangleybeerfestival).