Melanie Pierce's path to launching one of the longest running and most lucrative nonprofit festivals began first in Chicago, then Colorado, and lastly Carlsbad. It was during her time in the southern California beach town where she became deeply rooted in the then-novel, now-burgeoning craft beer community, and where her passion for connecting with people and educating them was largely solidified. Her exposure to the camaraderie and fellowship among brewers - both as a bartender and later as a Special Events Manager – began to hone her creative and professional skills. Working side-by-side with members of the closely knit, universally supportive beer crowd – typically at specialty beer festivals and other industry events - inspired an idea: why can’t a beer festival benefit a good cause? Her own family exposure to breast cancer served as a launching pad, and ultimately how Brewbies® Festival was born in 2010.
Leveraging her long-standing, sincere relationships with dozens of breweries and their brewers, Melanie was able to create one of the first beer festivals to benefit a nonprofit organization. She called it Brewbies® - never knowing if the first one would also be the last – and decided on the beneficiary. It was here the two worlds combined: craft beer and Keep A Breast.
To date, Brewbies® is looking forward to its 9th year, is now held in two cities, and has raised over $350,000.