A March 16 article in USA Today about tourists being drawn to distilleries and breweries gives a couple paragraphs to Bend’s Ale Trail and Boneyard Beer. That is fantastic publicity for the Ale Trail and Bend itself as USA Today has over 3.1 million readers. The excerpt below mentions that all of the breweries are within walking distance of each other but that doesn’t mean you have to walk. There is more than one way to travel the trail that made CraftBeer.com’s top 10 list.
In June 2010, tourism officials in Bend, Ore., launched the Bend Ale Trail, hoping to connect the breweries of the growing craft beer industry in the area. Seven brewers, all within walking distance of one another, form the trail.
Having the trail in place has been a huge boost to the success of Boneyard Beer, a brewery of only 10 employees that launched at the same time the trail began, says Melodee Story, party planner for Boneyard. In the two years it has been open, the brewery has produced 12 different beers available in draft only.
Because of the Bend Ale Trail, Story says, Boneyard Beer is getting recognition from bar owners and customers well beyond what the brewery could have expected.
“It has been huge exposure,” Story says. “It’s given us this jump start, particularly in Oregon.”
That benefit extends beyond the individual breweries, Story says.
“Our town has been hit pretty hard by the economy,” she says. “This Bend Ale Trail is great because it’s creating jobs.”