Brew at the Zoo. Crazy Fun(draiser). Who Knew?

Beer connoisseurs, animal lovers and an army of food trucks converged on the National Zoo July 11, joining forces to raise money for wildlife. And drink good beer, of course. 

Brew at the Zoo is the premier event hosted annually by Friends of the National Zoo (FONZ) and sold out again this year. Proceeds go to conservation, education, animal care and research for the Smithsonian National Zoo.

Sixty beer varieties by craft, micro and widely distributed breweries were featured. Sixty. Remember power hour? Doubtful. But the comparison stands.

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Locally loved breweries like Flying Dog and DC Brau were on hand as well as national favorites, New Belgium and Boulevard Brewing.

The new up-and-comer, Right Proper, even poured its first pints in a debut at the event. If the initial samples are any indication, Right Proper is about to take DC by storm.  Their T Street store front is in the works and distribution is pending, but bunker down and be prepared beer fans.  This is one storm not to be evacuated from.

VIP drinkers sampled local restaurant fare from Jack Rose, BLT Steak and more while the regular folk dined on delicious food truck goodness from Pepe’s and Red Hook Lobster, among others. The brewfest was musically narrated by Gonzo’s Nose and provided a bit of exercise via Trolley Pub, a fabulous invention that’s more or less a petal-powered bar on wheels, for twelve cyclists. Burn those beer calories!

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By the end of the night, guests were covered in temporary FONZ tattoos, The Traveler Beer Company’s stick on mustaches, Woodchuck Cider stickers and flowered leis from who knows where. If the amount of flair showcased the success of this fundraiser, it was a win. Thank goodness! Now, Rusty the Red Panda can afford a treadmill and won’t have to go to Adams Morgan for a stroll ever again.


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