On a basic level, it doesn’t take much set-up to pour brews at a beer festival. A participating brewery generally needs a table, ice and a serving apparatus like a jockey box. Signage probably helps a bit too, since you want attendees to know what you’re serving, but that’s pretty much it. At the Great American Beer Festival, each of the 800 breweries get a designated space to serve their respective offerings, and most of them take the basic approach, which hopefully lets the beer do the talking.
For some breweries, the annual celebration of American suds takes on the appearance of a competitive suburban neighborhood during the holidays, as companies try to one-up each other in the décor department. From corrugated metal and string lights to vintage trailers and fire pits, here are some of the best booths from the 2016 Great American Beer Festival.