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As the craft beer industry in Bellingham grows, smaller communities within craft beer grow as well. Whether it be the camaraderie among local brewers or the bond shared by beertenders around town, the love of craft beer seemingly brings people together unlike any other industry. Blame it on the pints we share every day, or maybe there’s just something in the water in Bellingham (hops, yeast and barley), but the love of craft beer in this town is the backbone behind countless relationships, business partnerships and friends who are like family.

This can be said for craft beer communities around the United States, and within these beer-centric cities are networks of women in the industry who celebrate just that, their love of the job. The Pink Boots Society is just one way women in the industry have connected, and that opportunity to connect is now moving closer to home by beginning a Bellingham chapter.

Pink Boots Society (PBS) has been around for 11 years and has grown from a few chapters in major beer towns to reaching beer communities of all sizes in the last few years. PBS is a way for women in craft beer to “advance their beer careers through education” according to the organization’s list of values and goals. Female brewers, beertenders, sales reps, marketers, managers and owners make up some of the thousands of members of PBS, who pay a membership fee and attend quarterly events meant for networking and beer education opportunities.

PBS provides scholarship for women to attend brew school, part of where their proceeds go from annual membership fees. Another priority and goal of PBS is to “teach women beer professionals the judging skills necessary to become beer judges at the GABF (Great American Beer Festival) and other competitions.”

PBS is a non-profit that’s education focused, and women in the Bellingham beer community will have a chance to learn more about PBS and their mission on Sunday, September 16 at the PBS Bellingham kickoff event at Elizabeth Station. Starting at 5 pm, a dollar from each beer sold from kegs specifically donated for this event, will benefit the Pink Boots Society Bellingham chapter.

While locally this is a male dominated industry, there is no doubt that Bellingham has some seriously talented women in craft beer, some of which are already involved in PBS. Thus far, the recent extent of PBS in Bellingham has been an International Women’s Day collaborative brew hosted by Stones Throw Brewery. The product was the delicious oatmeal pale ale found all over town called These Boots Were Made for Hoppin’.

PBS Bellingham is for women in craft beer at all levels of the industry. If you’ve been beertending for a week and want to be involved in this opportunity to advance your craft beer career and get to know some talented female brewers, beertenders and general members of the craft beer community, there will be a chance to sign up for membership and even pay your membership dues at the event on September 16. The Bellingham chapter of PBS is focused on inclusion of all levels of experience in craft beer.

“We are the movers and shakers in the beer industry. We get the beer brewed and fermented with the highest possible quality. We also own breweries, package the beer, design beers, serve beers, write about beer and cover just about any aspect of beer and we’re all women,” says the PBS website.

Any women in Bellingham’s beer industry should mark their calendars for September 16 from 5-10 pm at Elizabeth Station. Whether you’re going to pay membership dues, make connections with other women in craft beer, or buy a beer benefitting the success of women in beer, don’t miss out on this introduction to Pink Boots Bellingham.

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