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WENATCHEE — The whole idea behind Tour de Beer when it was organized two years ago was to make the experience of watching the annual Tour de Bloom Downtown Criterium even better for spectators.

Mission accomplished.Tour de Beer Rack Card1

Now entering its third year as a mainstay of Tour de Bloom and the Apple Blossom Festival, Tour de Beer will feature five beer gardens when it is held from 3 to 10 p.m. Saturday, May 7, along closed-off streets in downtown Wenatchee.

Each of the beer gardens are located inside tents and feature local craft beers and other goodies.

Here are the locations, craft beers being served, and the host group:

— S.W. corner of Orondo and Chelan avenues; featuring Wenatchee Valley Brewing and Fremont Brewing; hosted by Wenatchee Valley Velo Club

— N.E. corner of Orondo and Wenatchee avenues; featuring Badger Mountain Brewing; hosted by AdventureWenatchee Foundation.

— Wenatchee Avenue and Palouse Street; featuring Icicle Brewing; hosted by Wenatchee Valley Velo Club

— Wenatchee Avenue and First Street; featuring Iron Horse Brewing; hosted by Evergreen Mountain Bike Alliance

— Memorial Park (on Orondo Avenue side); hosted by Apple Blossom Festival

Wenatchee Valley Velo Club, which organizes and puts on Tour de Bloom, is excited about the growth in Tour de Beer.

“Last year, the downtown streets were packed with spectators watching the Criterium, and the beer gardens were a major reason for that, as they provided another element to the overall experience for people. The riders in the Criterium were absolutely blown away by all the people and all the cheering.

“It is an incredible way to cap the two-week run of the Apple Blossom Festival and to bring more people downtown after the Grand Parade finishes.”

Tour de Beer is held during the same hours — 3 to 10 p.m. — as the cycling races. Both Tour de Beer and Tour de Bloom are held in conjunction with the community’s Apple Blossom Festival. Earlier in the day, the festival’s Grand Parade will take place in downtown.

This year, Tour de Bloom includes four races spread out over three days in the Wenatchee Valley and Douglas County. The Leavenworth Road Race, with start and finish in the Bavarian Village, is held on Friday afternoon, May 6. The Hill Climb Race is held Saturday morning, May 7, and take riders from Squilchuck State Park to Mission Ridge Ski & Board Resort. The Criterium follows later that afternoon and evening in downtown. And the Road Race is held the next day, May 8, amid the rolling wheat fields in neighboring Waterville.

For more info on Tour de Bloom, please visit http://www.wenatcheevalleyvelo.com/

For more on the Apple Blossom Festival, please visit http://www.appleblossom.org/

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