Dates of Arizona Beer Week and Arizona Cocktail Week Overlap Again -- And Neither Group Is Budging

Categories: Chow Bella

Fans of adult beverages and the events in which they're celebrated are going to have a tricky time filling out their calendars from Saturday, February 16, through Saturday, February 23, this year. That's when Arizona Beer Week and Arizona Cocktail Week, two of the Valley's major events hailing craft beer and mixed drinks, overlap. Their dates, save for an extra day for Arizona Beer Week, are exactly the same.

Dudes, come on.

See also:
- 17 Don't-Miss Events During Arizona Beer Week, Feb. 16-23
- 6 Don't-Miss Events During AZ Cocktail Week: Feb 16-22

If the same thing hadn't happened last year, one might think there's an honest mistake in all this. Because, really, why would two big drinking events risk confusing, frustrating, and dividing their customer base because of a few silly days on the calendar?

Ah well, I'm sure the two parties have a logical explanation for what's going on -- right?

Not really.

A public relations representative for Arizona Beer Week says they got to the dates first (the event is in its third year; Arizona Cocktail Week is in its second) and that they've expressed to Arizona Cocktail Week that the overlapping days aren't a good idea.

"If we go any later in February, we hit the Great Arizona Beer Festival. Any earlier and we run into other big events," the representative explained. "I have no idea why they [Arizona Cocktail Week] would want their week the same as ours. Arizona Beer Week was established and on every calendar prior to Cocktail Week. Everyone in the media has asked the same question."

In their own statement regarding the overlap, Arizona Cocktail Week says that the days of its event, which also happen to be the days of Arizona Beer Week, were selected for strategic reasons -- three to be exact:

"First, we wanted to make sure that Arizona Cocktail Week doesn't conflict with similar cocktail events nationwide. To further Arizona's cocktail culture, we rely on national talent to present and partake in our event. February 16 to 22 is when renowned mixologists are available, and without them, we would not have an event.

It is also the best time for the Hotel Valley Ho to accommodate the needs of Arizona Cocktail Week. They are a valuable partner and we have to make sure our event doesn't conflict with any they have scheduled on the property.

This time of year is full of festivities and our available weekends are limited. We don't want to compete with long-standing events such as the Phoenix Open, Barrett-Jackson, Arabian Horse Show and more."

In the statement, Arizona Cocktail Week (of which New Times is a co-sponsor) goes on to say it doesn't see a reason why the two experiences cannot co-exist and that it has reached out to Arizona Beer Week (of which New Times is a co-sponsor) to collaborate and cross-promote the events.

If that's happened, there's little evidence of it. Besides, what would be the benefit of doing so, given that both events are going on at the same time?

One thing's for sure, despite the hoopla, nobody's budging. And if the two can't reach an agreement in the future, fans of both craft beer and cocktails can expect more of the same in 2014.


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Despite how this article is trying to sell it, and is trying pretty much on its lonesome, it is an issue of principle and nothing else. Different vendors, different participants, different markets. There is no confusion on the part of the festival goer, the vast majority of whom were leaning one way or another long before the dates, or each event itself, were announced. No one worries about beer and liquor competing under normal circumstances and it should be no different here. If anything the disproportionately large interest base that beer has by default makes the issue, of who was here first, moot. Neither has to budge in 2014, and the only loss they will experience will come from buying into this false "hoopla". Phoenix is far too large, and growing, for this nonsense.


Seriously, Arizona event planners suck.  They cram everything into a few choice weekends in the Fall and Spring instead of getting together to coordinate so we might truly have a "season" of festivals.  Personally, I don't care about the Open or Barrett Jackson conflicts.  Last I checked, the valley has a few million people and I'm quite confident we can have events for everyone to enjoy.      


Big deal...pick your favorite and go for it....Cannot wait for Cocktail Week-end at Valley Ho


Thank You Steve Olson AKA winegeek for setting the record straight!


Thank You Steve Olson AKA winegeek for setting the record straight!

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