Washington D.C.’s largest craft beer festival, Snallygaster, is named for a half-reptile half-bird mythical beast said to have terrorized the people of D.C.-Maryland-Virginia since the 18th century. While the mythical Snallygaster snatched children, this beast of a festival claims adults, luring them in with unlimited beer, wine and cocktails for the past 11 years.
While it was formerly held in Navy Yard, the festival now closes three blocks of Pennsylvania Avenue for the day, filling the usually jammed street with drink tents, food trucks and music. The event presents no less than 350 craft beers and other drinks curated by the festival’s organizers: local breweries including Bluejacket, ChurchKey, The Sovereign, and Shelter. Recent years have had taps from brewers like Cantillon, Fidens, Monkish, and Floodland. With that kind of lineup, Snallygaster is essentially Oktoberfest for D.C. dads and recent graduates of George Washington’s beer pong team.
Beer isn’t the only thing Snallygaster has to show for itself. The festival has a slew of food trucks each year and musical acts on two stages: the Gallery Stage and Capitol Stage. DJs and bands play throughout the afternoon, with expectedly fun names like Trouble Funk and Moose Jaw performing everything from bluegrass and reggae to hip hop, pop and electronica. 2023’s lineup will be announced closer to the festival date.
- 8,000 beer lovers and their designated drivers attend Snallygaster each year.
- Tickets are $65 for general admission (The Kraken Pass) and $130 for VIP early admission (Basilisk Pass).
- VIP tickets have already sold out for 2023, GA tickets are expected to sell out before the day of the event.
- Check out Fifty Grande’s guides to Maryland and Virginia for some regional travel inspo.
Where is the nearest airport?
Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport is the closest to the festival, located just across the potomac river from downtown Washington D.C.
Where is the festival located?
Snallygaster is located on Pennsylvania Ave NW between 3rd & 6th, downtown near Capitol Hill.
How do I get around?
The festival is surrounded by several D.C. metro stops, which is the easiest way to get around the city without a car.
Can I bring food into the festival?
Outside food is not allowed at the festival, however, there will be food trucks galore to try in between the festival’s unlimited drinks.
I don’t drink, can I go?
Yes, the festival is open to both designated drivers and those under 21 attending the festival, with separate areas and activities available for young children.