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Gazette Premium Content Virginia kicks off 3rd annual craft beer month

Associated Press Updated: August 1, 2014 at 5:00 am

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia is kicking off its third annual craft beer month.

Events are scheduled throughout the state during August at breweries, restaurants and hotels to celebrate Virginia's more than 80 craft breweries.

Among the events is the Virginia Craft Brewers Fest scheduled for Aug. 23 at Devils Backbone Brewery in Nelson County.

Tourism officials say craft breweries are a growing tourism attraction opportunity statewide with an estimated economic impact of more than $622 million.

A study by the Brewers Association found that the industry in Virginia employs more than 8,000 people with an average wage of $33,541 and total labor income of more than $273 million.

Tourism officials say many more communities are targeting brewery businesses to compliment other related tourism economic development efforts.

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