Sly Fox News

May 14, 2020

Sly Fox to Host 2020 Bock Festival and Goat Races Online

The brewery imagined a virtual version of the popular Bock Festival and Goat races and got busy planning a free online event that goes live this Sunday, May 17, at 2pm on the brewery’s Facebook page.

Tune in this Sunday for an entertaining, at home version of the "best beer event in the Philadelphia region."

Facebook Live – Sunday, May 17, at 2pm

For the past twenty years, the first Sunday in May has meant one thing to beer lovers in and around Philadelphia– the return of what has been called the “region’s best beer event,” the annual Sly Fox Brewing Company Bock Festival and Goat Races.

The free event is attended by more than 5,000 people who, while enjoying freshly released Sly Fox bock beers, marvel at the spectacle of as many as 60 goats racing in multiple heats in the field next to the brewery. Like all large gatherings in early 2020, the twenty-first annual Sly Fox Bock Festival was cancelled.

“Here at the brewery, goats, bock beers, and oompah music means spring has arrived,” reflects sales manager Peter Giannopoulos. “The Bock Fest has become a tradition where friends meet annually at a unique and quirky, one-of-a-kind event. We were extremely disappointed to have to cancel it, especially considering May 3rd was a 75 degree, sunny day.”

That’s why Peter and the team at the brewery imagined a virtual version of the festival and got busy planning a free online event that goes live this Sunday, May 17, at 2pm on the brewery’s Facebook page. The 2020 Virtual Bock Fest and Goat Races features 25 digital goats complete with custom backstories that could give a hint to their racing abilities. People can log onto to select a goat and potentially win a VIP experience at the 2021 festival including overnight accommodations, primo trackside seating, and beer and food galore.

Like the real festival, viewers can cheer for an online Masskrugstemmen (stein holding) competition and sing along German-inspired festival music from crowd favorite and polka-rock master, Alex Meixner. A limited edition 2020 festival t-shirt is available for sale on the Bock Fest website. $5 from every shirt sold will go to the Hospitality Assistance Response of PA to help local hospitality workers in this time of need.

“We hope the Bock Fest & Goat Race fans out there all stop by their closest Sly Fox pub to stock up on growlers of the freshly tapped Instigator Doppelbock and Maibock in preparation for the virtual fest,” continues Giannopoulos. As is Bock Fest tradition, this year’s Maibock release will be named in honor of the winning goat, which is available for growler and sixtel pick-up now at the Sly Fox pubs in Eastern PA. The brewery reports that Maibock will also be available in a limited run of 12 oz. cans featuring this year’s theme and the winning goat’s name. Look for Maibock cans to hit the pubs later next week.

While no actual goats will claim this year’s glory, there are twenty-five fictional goat racers that hundreds of Bock Fest fans have chosen from, each giving their own goat a name. One fictional goat will be crowned the virtual victor, and one lucky participant who selected that goat will win the grand prize. In the situation where several competitors have chosen the same goat number, the name of the grand prize-winning goat/participant combo will be drawn at random.

Additionally, anyone watching at home will be automatically entered to win raffles that will take place between the races and performances by Meixner and between some other surprises, like the anticipated announcement of a Bock Fest Hall of Fame.

The Sly Fox team has been working hard on this Sunday’s presentation for the better part of the lockdown and are excited to share the experience with anyone who wants to escape reality for a short time for the first, and hopefully last, virtual Bock Festival.

“We know it isn’t the same,” adds Giannopoulos, “nothing is.”

About Sly Fox Brewing Company Since the inaugural brew in 1995, Sly Fox has been dedicated to brewing a wide variety of the highest quality beers. Its critically acclaimed year-round lineup and highly anticipated seasonals are available at the brewpubs in Phoenixville and Pottstown and Taphouses in Malvern, Pittsburgh, Reading, and Wyomissing as well as top restaurants and retailers in PA, NJ, NY, MD, VA, and Washington, DC. Sly Fox was the first craft brewery in the mid-Atlantic to implement a canning line and with it, earned the first-ever Great American Beer Festival (GABF) medal awarded to a canned craft beer. Sly Fox has earned many GABF medals since and is widely recognized as among the region's best and most enduring independent craft breweries.

Additional information can be found HERE.