100 craft beers available at Hops in the Hangar aircraft-themed event this weekend

Event showcases 100 beers from 30 breweries.

MIDDLETOWN — Guests will enjoy a combination of historic aircrafts, plane rides and air shows highlighted by craft brews, food and more at Middletown’s Hops in the Hangar event this weekend.

“We know the event is geared toward those who like airports, airplanes and craft beer, and it is a 21 and up event, but there is a lot of energy around it. Everyone is excited, on board, and has purchased tickets,” said founder Jamie Murphy.

This annual fundraising gala will bring together aviation attractions and craft beer lovers for a one-day event at Middletown Regional Airport. The 2022 festivities will be from 5 to 9 p.m. Saturday for general admission ticketholders. A VIP hour will be from 4 to 5 p.m. Tickets are available at www.hopsinthehangar.com.

“There’s really nothing like this event. So, we just like to share this with people outside of our community, who also get to realize the things going on in Middletown. We get visitors spending the night in hotels, locally, and we get people going into the downtown area to shop and eat, before the event. It also helps the residents in our own community realize what we have here,” said Phillip Harrison, Murphy’s husband, who also helps to coordinate the event.

We make sure everybody understands how much fun it is and how great the resources of our community are, he said.

“Middletown has some pretty cool things going on, and this is one of them,” Harrison said.

Attendees will enjoy more than 100 different beers from 30 breweries, five food trucks and other participating vendors who will be on site. Participating breweries come from Columbus, Dayton, Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky, and beyond. Sponsoring breweries include N.E.W. Ales, Bushrod Brew Works, Loose Ends Brewing Company and Astra Hard Seltzer by March First Brewing as well as Buckeye Vodka.

“We have a wide variety of beer and other beverages this year that we haven’t had in the past,” Harrison said.

N.E.W. Ales has created a signature beer specifically for the event called Hops in the Hanger “Falconer’s Flight” Pale Ale. The label for the beer was designed by local tattoo artist, Nicki Tate.

Skydivers from Team Fastrax professional skydiving team will present a skydiving show with flags at 5 p.m. and continue with a pyrotechnics demonstration at night, beginning at dusk, around 9:20 p.m., weather permitting.

Additionally, Redline Airshows aerobatic flight team will put on a 40-minute show. There will be several different performances throughout the event.

The Butler County Warbirds Museum, which is located at the airport has worked closely with the event since its inception. The museum will showcase several historic, World War II planes. Personnel will also be dressed in period military costumes.

Butler County Warbirds display area and hangar are typically open Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (The display areas and hangar are closed major holidays that fall on a weekend.) There is no charge to visit, but donations are welcome.

Other aircraft will also be on display at the event, including a helicopter from the Butler County Sheriff’s Office.

Aircraft rides will be offered during the event from several of the participants for a fee. For those who want to bring their families prior to the start of the event, there will be helicopter rides available from Columbus Indiana Huey from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Butler County Warbirds Museum. The rides will move to the event site at 4 p.m.

Supported by the City of Middletown, and many community partners and sponsors, the event was started in 2018 by Murphy to showcase the resources of the community, including the airport. The event was not held in 2020 or 2021 due to COVID-19.

Hops in the Hangar benefits Downtown Middletown Inc. as well as several other nonprofit organizations such as Sorg Opera House, Butler County Warbirds and Columbus Indiana Huey.

“One of the things that I see about this community is it is a community that likes to give for the betterment of the community,” said Jeff Payne, executive director of Downtown Middletown Inc.

Those devoted to this are doing this out of their commitment to creating and helping to build a stronger Middletown, a better Middletown, he said.

Sixty to 100 volunteers turnout to support the event. Many of them are local business owners.

“The people in Middletown really care, and they want to put on a good event for everyone,” Harrison said.

Murphy said the volunteers are just one example of why the event is such a success.

“Most of our volunteers, breweries, and sponsors have been with us from day one…It’s everybody’s event, so they take it seriously and with pride, and they try to do everything they can to make this a great event,” she said.

How to go

What: Hops in the Hangar

When: 5 to 9 p.m. Saturday. VIP Hour 4 to 5 p.m.

Where: Middletown Regional Airport (Hook Field), 1707 Run Way

Cost: Advance tickets range from $20 to $60. Tickets will be available for an increased cost at the gate, pending that the event doesn’t sell out in advance.

More info: www.hopsinthehangar.com

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