Local Festival Celebrates One Of the Regions Biggest Products - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Local Festival Celebrates One Of the Regions Biggest Products

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MOXEE, Wash.-- It is a long time tradition for many people in the valley, and it also is a boost for local brewers in the area.

The Moxee Hop Festival is not just fun and games; it is a way of life in Central Washington.

This year marks the 66th festival in Moxee, and celebrates one of the regions biggest products.

"It's just a part of an overall community celebration for, like I said, the upcoming hop harvest," said President of the East Valley Community Enrichment Association, Tony Roth.

The event is not just about the hops though; it also showcases the local breweries.  Bale Breaker in Moxee started up just a few months ago, and is already seeing a great turnout.

"Last night was really busy around here.  We were in town for lunch earlier today and there were some people from San Francisco in town who had heard about the festival and heard about what we are doing here.  They are going to come visit the brewery, so I think it does help draw more people in," said Bale Breaker Owner, Meghann Quinn.

This is all a testament to the growth of the craft beer industry in the valley. The region provides about 70% of the nation's hops.

"I think that the beer industry around Yakima is growing quickly and I think there is a lot of room for growth," Quinn said.

Event organizers said it is also about the people who make the beer.

"It's about time, we're the hop capitol of the world out here, and it's good to finally have our own brewery, and with the popularity of the craft beers right now, there's a lot of upbeat attitudes in the hop industry," said Roth.

But even if you're not into beer, it is always a good time to be had in Moxee.

"We are so glad to see so many people coming out and having fun," Quinn said.

The festival runs every first Friday and Saturday in August at the Moxee City Park.

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