Below is a communication from Mark Stober the BFB President
Florida homebrew club representatives – I’m sending this out to the club contact list that was used after the last meeting in 2013, please feel free to pass on to additional interested parties as contacts may have changed.
As this year’s president of the Best Florida Beer organization I would like to announce several planned changes for 2016 that will affect FL circuit brewers, judges, and competitions.
In recent years the AHA National Competition organizer has made several informal queries about whether we would be willing to host a NHC regional round. We take it as a compliment that the AHA appears to recognize the high standards and participation within Florida competitions as well as our burgeoning beer and homebrewing scene, so BFB has decided to pursue hosting a regional NHC competition slot in 2016.
The scheduling and confirmation of the 2016 NHC regional sites is not yet finalized and will not be for some to come, but we have to make our own scheduling plans now to allow time for planning. The timing of the NHC regional competition is something that is mandated by the AHA in conjunction with the NHC finals usually held in June. The presumed time frame for the regional comps will likely be in late March, which will present an obvious scheduling conflict with the usual time slot for the Best Florida Beer competition traditionally held in the late Feb/early March time frame, as well as some other circuit competitions usually held in that general time frame. Coincidental to this, the Sunshine Challenge made the change this year to cease serving as the concluding circuit competition and moved their competition up to mid-year. Therefore, our plan in 2016 is to move the homebrew portion of the Best Florida Beer competition back to assume the concluding competition slot previously served by SSC and schedule final round judging on October 8th 2016; while the professional side of the BFBC competition (and The Brewers Ball) will remain in the existing February time frame.
Although this change will put BFBC in relatively close proximity to the Commander SAAZ competition planned for mid-September, we found numerous challenges and conflicts in trying to hold it at any time later then the early October time frame, which is at least in part the reason the SSC organizers decided to move their competition earlier in the year. That tight scheduling is also not a significant departure from the usual scheduling of competitions in close proximity to each other in the spring time, and moving back to the fall should help alleviate some of the logjam of circuit competitions that usually occur between late February through early May.
As you know, the NHC regionals are open to all brewers but points earned there do count towards the Fl circuit so it is essentially a de facto circuit competition. In the event we are able to secure the position as a host site for the regionals we do hope the Florida homebrewing community at large will recognize the opportunity to further strengthen the prominence and reputation of the Florida homebrew scene by hosting a regional and will support us both in participating in hosting duties with the competition as well as understanding the need for the scheduling changes. If we are able to secure it we will send further information about the regional competition as it becomes available.
President, Best Florida Beer