Richmond’s HeArt & Soul Brew Fest awarded national grant for diversity, inclusion

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RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — A Richmond art and beer festival is receiving recognition at the national level.

The Brewers Association awarded one of its first-ever diversity and inclusion event grants to the 4th annual HeArt & Soul Brew Fest scheduled for July 27 at Hardywood Park Craft Brewery. 

A total of 51 applications were summited, and just six events were awarded a total of $20,000 by the Brewers Association Diversity Committee.

“Beer events connect people with beer and each other,” Craft Beer Program Director Julia Herz said. “Inspiring organizers to deliberately welcome a broad and diverse group of attendees is the opportunity and our goal.”

Hardywood agrees they want to get as many people as possible out to their facilities.

“To get as many people as we can out here to enjoy the facilities,” said Hardywood Marketing Manager, Deanna Hamad. “And just get some new people out to the brewery and hopefully reach some new audiences.”

HeArt & Soul Brew Fest founder told 8News she is humbled by the recognition.

“I am so excited to enhance what we’ve created over the last three years,” said Kelli Lemon.

The fest brings together urban music, urban art, craft beer, and soul food. 

The grants were given to support local and regional events that promote and foster a diverse and inclusive craft beer community.

“To be able to showcase a lot more of that talent especially within our black and our brown and our very diverse populations here in Richmond,” Lemon said. “I just wanna make sure that’s out there while we’re drinking some great beers.”

This summer organizers are eager to bring in more new faces.

“I think because we are this culinary hub right now, we’re this beer and this coffee hub right now why not get everybody involved and make sure that we’re celebrating all things Richmond,” Lemon said.

Restaurants, artists and vendors can still get involved by sending an email here.

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