It takes more than just a homebrewing kit to make your own craft beer, and we’ve tried enough watered down attempts to know the difference. Brewing beer at home is a historic practice, dating from the 1920s when Prohibition forced beer lovers to retreat into the privacy of their home, all the way till now when modern-day craft brewers have perfected the art and created a thriving industry.

Charleston in particular has come a long way, and we’ve been attracting attention. The American Homebrewers Association (AHA) has noticed our booming brew industry and decided to hold their very first rally in South Carolina right here at Holy City Brewing on Sat. Sept. 13 from 10 a.m.-1 p.m.

“The whole state of South Carolina is up-and-coming with the craft beer community,” says Matt Bolling, events and membership coordinator of the AHA. “We wanted to rally membership in the area to go along with the Charleston Beer Week.”

The rally is exclusive to AHA members, but if you aren’t one, you can purchase a discounted membership at the door for $38. Membership includes subscription to the homebrew magazine Zymurgy, discounts and special offers at pubs and breweries across the country, and access to numerous events and rallies just like this one. Seasoned beer enthusiasts and newbies alike will have the opportunity to learn about the brewing process and try some unique beers.

Rally attendees will receive a VIP tour of the brewery and the opportunity to watch the Holy City guys brew their own Julbocken Barleywine. Plus, the best part of any brewery tour will be provided in abundance: guests can sample any Holy City beer while they watch the brewing process, including sips of Julbocken and a special cask of an IPA with a hint of basil and mint, Bolling says. There will also be a raffle to win AHA merchandise and homebrewing books, so you can duplicate the process at home.

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