Red Butte played under the shade of the pavillion at Wild West Brewfest at the Town Park Shelter area in Dubois Saturday

Shawn O’Brate

DUBOIS – Over the course of the Summer there have been a few events that bring everybody together over the love of music, community and (more importantly) a cold beer or seltzer that helps loosen everyone up and get them in a cheerful mood.

This past Saturday was one of those exact days in Dubois as they put on their second annual Dubois Brewfest in the park behind the Big Horn Sheep Center and the Dubois Museum. 

Music filled the air as two local artists took the “stage” and performed for a total of 450 people throughout the day, drinking a variety of 32 total beers on tap around the park. While that number of people might sound small to some communities around Wyoming, the number that was attracted to Brewfest on Saturday would seemingly be half of the population of the small, mountain town dubbed ‘Wyoming’s Wonderland’ and nearly doubled the amount of participants from last year’s inaugural event.

“We have a real nice combination of local Dubois folks, a lot of of people driving through, tourists, a lot of people from guest ranches, and certainly family and friends of the vendors and brewers,” Weydeveld said about the size of the event, “We’re definitely doing it again next year.”

The two music performances, the Red Butte band and Jalan Crossland, set the mood for the entire day which had perfect weather with fleeting moments of intense heat blocked off by the large trees in the park, forming an amazing day for such a momentous event for the town.

Why was it so momentous though? Because last year, with COVID still very close in the rearview mirror, caused more problems than the Dubois Chamber of Commerce could shake a stick at.

“For the brewers to be back out and about after COVID…it’s really important to us,” Jennifer Weydeveld of the Dubois Chamber of Commerce said, “What happened was the aluminum price changed dramatically thanks to COVID…so to have all of these Wyoming brewers today is a big deal.”

Weydeveld put both Brewfests together so far with help from the town of Dubois and was ecstatic to see the turnout this past Saturday compared to the previous year when she and the Chamber of Commerce were learning on the fly.

“Our big sponsor was Range (internet), it was them that gave me the courage to go into the second year,” Weydeveld said, “Putting these things on in a small town of 900 people with no event planners is very hard, and they helped a lot.”

Range not only helped give Weydeveld the courage to do the Brewfest once again but they helped everybody at the event with free Wi-Fi throughout the day and provided koozies for everyone partaking in the multiple types of beer. 

Weydeveld also gained extra courage when Crossland, a musical artist she saw in Cheyenne, was able to join in the festivities and play his well-known music for the town.

“I haven’t done a public show in this town for ten years,” Crossland, a Ten Sleep native, said before taking to the stage, “it’s a wonderful crowd here, for the brew and the music, everyone seems really fun and cheerful.”

With so much happening in Dubois over the Summer, from the weekly Friday night rodeos, to the programs and events happening at the National Big Horn Sheep Center and Dubois Museum, the Brewfest seems to be growing in size and value for the town and inspires hope for the next year.

“Summer is a really important for Dubois,” Weydeveld said, “not just for us here, the residents, but all the guest ranches and dude ranches fill up. I know [Brewfest] is so new, we’re in our infancy, but I think it’s going to be one of our biggest events.”

The booths, the vendors, the music, the cold brews and the vibes that surrounded this year’s Dubois Brewfest was hard to beat and only makes next year’s Brewfest more anticipated for everybody who managed to make it out for this year’s second annual event. Until then, if you’d like to be a part of the third annual Dubois Brewfest, whether it be as a musical act, a vendor, a distributor or anything else, feel free to contact the Dubois Chamber of Commerce for more information on how to do so.