CONEXPO Quarry CrusherThere’s an old adage that says, “A fine beer may be judged by one sip, but it’s better to be thoroughly sure.”

For attendees and exhibitors of CONEXPO-CON/AGG, there will be no shortage of opportunities to sample, judge and enjoy one or more servings of the Quarry Crusher cryo-hop pilsner this week in Las Vegas, a beer brewed exclusively for the 2023 edition of North America's largest construction trade show.

“We really wanted to do something special as a surprise-and-delight opportunity to engage attendees and exhibitors of CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2023,” said AEM Director of Logistics Mary Bukovic, who worked with fellow show organizers, food service provider Aramark and Eugene, Oregon-based brewery Hop Valley Brewing Co. on the Quarry Crusher pilsner brewing initiative. “And what would be better than making an official show beer available for attendees to sample and enjoy while they’re at the show?”

Available For a Limited Time

A Laurel Cryo-hopped pilsner featuring light and juicy apricot notes and a crisp finish, the Quarry Crusher beer will be available exclusively at the Las Vegas Festival Grounds during the show. CONEXPO-CON/AGG attendees and exhibitors can find it in the Festival Grounds’ 62,000-square-foot beer garden, along with co-located food court and concession areas.

To commemorate the release of the first-ever official CONEXPO-CON/AGG beer and celebrate the construction industry being back together again in Las Vegas, show organizers are also pleased to announce a pair of special happy hour gatherings in the Festival Grounds this week.

The first is scheduled for Tuesday, March 14, the opening day of the show, from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Those in attendance will receive a free limited edition Quarry Crusher souvenir cup with their specialty beer purchase. The second happy hour is scheduled for Friday, March 17 from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m.

An Idea Too Good to Pass Up

So, how exactly did a construction trade show, even one as large and prominent as CONEXPO-CON/AGG, end up with an official show beer? It turns out it all started, as worthwhile endeavors usually do, with an idea too promising to pass up.

Last year, Aramark approached CONEXPO-CON/AGG show organizers and pitched Bukovic and her team on collaborating together to brew, brand and release a beer in conjunction with CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2023.

“It was evident to us immediately that Aramark possesses a strong sense of what people are looking for, and what people will find exciting and good,” said Bukovic. “We were immediately impressed and excited, and we wanted to know more about how we could incorporate it as a surprise-and-delight opportunity at the show.”

Aramark responded by connecting Bukovic with Hop Valley Brewing Co., which provided show organizers with a list of beers capable of being produced at a high volume and rebranded for a specialty occasion.

“It was so clear we should be onboard with this idea immediately,” said AEM Meetings and Housing Manager Leah Voors, who managed the beer selection process internally. “Everyone embraced it with open arms, which just made the process so much easier from that point forward.”

From Concept to Reality

AEM eventually welcomed Aramark and Hop Valley to its Milwaukee office last summer for a special sampling involving Bukovic, Voors and their fellow AEM colleagues. Three beers – including the cryo-hop pilsner – were on hand for AEM employees to enjoy and vote on, with the pilsner emerging as the clear favorite.

Association staff then suggested potential names for the trade show team to evaluate before passing on a few to be voted on by CONEXPO-CON/AGG social media followers. Quarry Crusher came out on top, and just like that, CONEXPO-CON/AGG had an official show beer.

According to Bukovic and Voors, the process of brewing, branding and releasing a specialty beverage associated with CONEXPO-CON.AGG reinforced the idea that create excitement and engagement surrounding the show can be an enjoyable and fun experience for all involved.

“We can be very serious and do all the things we need to do for a show like CONEXPO-CON/AGG, and at a show like CONEXPO-CON/AGG, but still have fun going about our work,” said Bukovic. “Business can, and should, be fun.


Undertaking a monthslong initiative to launch a specialty beverage in coordination with a live event is no small feat. So, the fact that Bukovic, Voors and the rest of the show team at AEM were able to successfully bring the Quarry Crusher cryo-hop pilsner to life ahead of CONEXPO-CON/AGG speaks to the prominence and influence of the show.

“In all honesty, the sheer size and volume of a gathering like CONEXPO-CON/AGG made this possible,” said Bukovic.

“We wanted to think outside the box a little bit when it came to brand recognition and coming up with a product that would really resonate with people at CONEXPO-CON/AGG,” said Aramark Sports + Entertainment District Manager Andrew Atwell. “When you do something every three years, like holding this show, you need to do something unique to reflect such a unique event.”

According to Atwell, 85 kegs of the beer have been brewed for the show this week. After CONEXPO-CON/AGG closes this Saturday, however, it will no longer be available for purchase or consumption. In the meantime, however, Bukovic encourages show attendees to take time out of their busy schedules to sample and enjoy what is truly the official beer of CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2023.

“We were intentional in our efforts to create an opportunity at our show for exhibitors and attendees to mingle, make connections and try a unique, quality beer made exclusively for CONEXPO-CON/AGG, said Bukovic. “Yes, it’s important to go to the booth and get business done, but we encourage people to take advantage of some downtime, try some Quarry Crusher and find out if it lives up to the hype.”

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