Hard Redz Summer Brew-off

SAND CREEK festival, inc. PRESENTS

The Hard Redz

the hard redz summer brew-off


Saturday, July 13

3:00 – 5:30 VIP Judging Admission

The Hard Redz Summer Brew-off is a great way to celebrate the Craft Brewing and Wheat Heritage in Kansas. The Hard Redz Summer Brew-off connects craft brewing to Newton’s economic roots in wheat-growing. The Sand Creek Summer Daze Festival and local home brewers have partnered to create an event that explores these two industries.

Brewing often uses a type of wheat called soft, white, spring wheat – it is planted in the spring. But Kansas is known for its hard, red, winter wheat. It is planted in the fall but gets its name from lying dormant through the winter. It has more tannins in the kernel and delivers a more robust, earthy, complex flavor profile. Mennonite immigrants presented this to America in the heart of Kansas!

Last year, sixteen home brewers set up tents to display their craftmanship and recipes. We invite you to sample and judge home brewing at it’s finest and meet local and surrounding communities’ craft brewers. One of these brewers will have their winning recipe brewed and served later in the fall by Salt City Brewing Company and you will get to taste it first!

To enter and sample (as a VIP Judge), you must pay $10 fee at the gate. Your entry judging packet will allow you to sample and vote on your favorite home brewed beer.

Brewers Information

12:00 pm  – 1:45 pm – Booth set up time

1:45 to 2:45 am – Brewers Social Hour

3:00 – 5:30 – VIP Public Admission

5:30 pm – Awards Ceremony



2024 Home Brewer Participants

Greater Topeka Hall of Foamers

Here are a few of previous participant’s testimonies:

“The Hard Redz Summer Brew-off is the best home brewing competition in Kansas.  It is not only a competition where your beers are judged by BJCP certified judges, but it is a festival like any other craft beer festival. I entered in 2018 and had such a great time I had to enter in 2019.  There were 13 brewers competing for the top spot of having Aero Plains Brewery brew your beer.  The best part about the event is getting to meet some local home brewers, see what they are making, and learn from their processes.  I enjoyed showing off my beers and finding a style that suited each taster, even if they weren’t a beer drinker.  I was fortunate enough to win Best Hard Redz Brewer and Best Garage Brewer.  I am already planning my 2020 Hard Redz beers and I hope there are even more brewers next year!”

Dr. David Mayans

2018, 2019 & 2021 Participant, 2019 & 2021 Hard Redz Category Winner

David Mayans - Tha Grain Elevator
Hard Redz - David Aero Plains

Home Brewers Information


Requirement #1 – Hard Red Wheat Division Labeling: Entries shall be marked as Hard Red (brewed using at least 20% Hard Red Wheat) or Non Hard Red Other (if brewed in kit form or less than 20% Hard Red Wheat) All are varieties of beers are welcome, but the focus (and special award category) is on our Kansas heritage as the Wheat State. Besides the Hard Red category, other sub categories will be judged. We hope to see a large field of red wheat as well as other beers!

Requirement #2 – Number of Entries: Each brewer may enter up to THREE of their best home brews.

Requirement #3 – Sampling Tent: Brewers must bring a minimum of 2 total gallons to dispense in 2 oz samples (which are provided by the festival). Brew may be dispensed from kegs, bottles, etc. and should represent at least two different brews. Bringing more than two options may please the VIP public judges and increase voter appeal! (combined, all brews needn’t exceed 2 gallons). Brewers are welcome to include any samples whether submitted for BJCP judging or not. Sampling will immediately stop at 3 pm when awards are announced.


Location: Athletic Park east side of football field in grass.  (see emailed map)


Hard Redz 1

Entry Fee: $8/per entry (3 maximum), with registration for your beer(s) through ReggieBeer. The entry link is on the bottom of page.


Deadline: The deadline for paying and registering your beer on Reggiebeer.com is Thursday, 06/13 at midnight and beer turned into Joey at Harvey County Now (423 N Main, Newton, KS 67114) no later than 5pm on Saturday, July 6th. We highly encourage early entries. We have refrigerated or temperature controlled 68-74 degree storage till time of judging. Contact Joey at joey@kspublishingventures.com to set up a time for drop off.


Booths: Any entry into the Hard Redz Summer Brew-off contest HAS to be represented with a booth and be present and serve the VIP judges beer in order to enter the contest. A 15′ by 15′ space will be made available for each entry. Participants will also get to keep their souvenir labeled beer stein that each booth uses for public voting!


Brewers Social Hour: This will be the time to visit with fellow brewers and snack on BBQ provided by the festival. Take this time to swap craft brewing information, stories and anything else.


Booth Workers: Each brewer will be given four buttons & wristbands for team members and MUST be 21 or older. Any other competitor entering the grounds must have a button in order to enter. Packets will be given to the team captain at the assigned entry gate with buttons as they enter.


Number of Contestants: 20


VIP Judging: The VIP Judges will vote on “Best Garage Crafter” between 3:00-5:30 pm. Votes will be based on beer taste, brewer friendliness, booth spirit, best labeling or art or whatever these judges may like. Remember, these judges have no specific criteria. (no music will be allowed in the Hard Redz Brew-off area tents)


BJCP Private Judging: This is a BJCP sanctioned competition, with private judging prior to the public event.


Prizes: Trophies/Plaques Only (no cash prizes are allowed by law in this event) Each brewer will receive the Sand Creek Summer Daze Festival embossed 64 oz growler used for the public judging portion of the event!



Best Brewer Hard Redz : BJCP Hard Red winner earns the honor of being brewed and served at T.B.A.
Prize: Trophy/Plaque/Ribbons
Beer recipe to be brewed by T.B.A.

Best Brewer Non Hard Redz: Non-Hard Red winners will be chosen by BJCP judges.
Prize: Trophy/Plaque/Ribbons

Best Brewer Peoples Choice: Based on VIP public judge vote
Prize: Trophy/Plaque/Ribbons

Best Pro Brewer Gose Style: Pro Brewer winners will be chosen by BJCP judge
Prize: Trophy/Plaque/Ribbons

Best Pro Brewer Peoples Choice: Based on VIP public judge vote
Prize: Trophy/Plaque/Ribbons

Best Brewer Tent Display: Based on committee vote and decision of which brewer’s tent and set up is the most interactive, most fun, thematic, friendly, decorated, etc. This vote is entirely subjective. (no music will be allowed in the Hard Redz Brew-off area)
Prize: Trophy/Plaque/Ribbons



What to Bring:

Tent: Bring a standard 10’x10’, up to 14’x14′ booth tent, or something equivalent. (no electricity provided, and no generators allowed)
Tables & Chairs: Bring a table or two, to serve your samples on and chairs for you to be comfortable.
Booth Decorations: Bring your logo, banner or whatever you want to make your booth fun, attractive and festive!


Register Your Spot 

In order to enter the Hard Redz’ Brew-off, you must do BOTH of the following by the deadlines.

2024 Event Sponsors: