The Aurora Movie Theater Tragedy last summer which abruptly ended the lives of 12 victims and shocked a nation still lingers as a bad dream for many as its anniversary draws closer. However, one Denver brewery is hoping to associate the grim anniversary as a celebration of life instead. Copper Kettle Brewery will host their second annual “A Night To Remember” on July 20th to raise a glass in the memory of the lives lost that fateful day one year ago. One of the victims of the tragedy was 24 year old Alex Teves, who was a regular patron of the brewery. Teves even became a member of the brewery’s elite Brew Club. Today, his Brew Club mug sits in the brewery’s display case where it is outfitted with a black ribbon along with a picture of Teves.
Copper Kettle Brewery co-owner Kristen Kozik, who with her husband Jeremy Gobien (co-owner/Brewmaster), opened the brewery together in 2011. Teves was one of their early customers and quickly became a friend of the couple. Kozik recalls first meeting Alex one night before closing after their second week of operations and then since seeing him return as a constant patron. “He was always so excited to try out what we had on tap and seemed to have a little twinkle in his eye every time he came in, like a child waking up on Christmas morning to open presents” Kozik reflected.
In the wake of the shootings last summer, a special charity event called “A Night To Remember” hosted at the brewery paid tribute to Teves after the blessing of his family. All proceeds the brewery raised that night went to a charity of his family’s choosing. By the end of the night, they raised over $17,000. Now, one year after that tragic day, Copper Kettle is once again paying tribute to Teves along with the other victims of the Aurora Tragedy with the 2nd annual “A Night To Remember” event. This year, the event will be bigger than ever, with the brewery hosting their very first ever beer festival along with food trucks and a silent auction featuring items from across the country, many of which were donated by breweries upon hearing of the event. All proceeds from the event will go to the ACT Foundation (a charity named in Teves’ honor) and Phoenix 999 which is a charity created by survivors of the Columbine High School Massacre started in the wake of the Aurora Theater Tragedy. Teves’ mother, along with other friends and family members of those killed are expected to speak at the event as well. In addition to the other offerings, there will also be a memory box so that guests can write down how the tragedy has affected them personally. Kozik would like to make sure the message of the event is not lost. “We want to make sure that this is not a night about gun violence, it’s not about gun control, it’s about honoring Alex, his family, and all the victims of this terrible tragedy. This is a celebration of life!”
The event has 10 breweries officially confirmed to participate from Denver and the surrounding area with the possibility of others joining the cause. In addition to the 12 beers planned to be on tap from Copper Kettle’s own offerings, Kozik said that if all goes well, they would like to brew a special beer based on a homebrew recipe that Teves made prior to passing away. For the victim’s family and friends, there will be a planned VIP section which will feature a few special reserve beers.
Tickets for the event will be $40 per person. The price includes unlimited beer samples from the participating breweries. In addition, there will be 4 food trucks on site and 2 live bands that will be playing throughout the night. The event has a 500 person cap and is expected to sell-out. For more information, visitors can go to the brewery’s website at www.copperkettledenver.com, but Kozik recommends checking out the event’s official Facebook page for the most up-to-date information. For those that cannot make the festivities but would like to contribute, they can visit the ACT Foundation’s official webpage at www.alexandertevesfoundation.org to make a donation. The event will be held on Saturday July 20, 2013 from 4pm-8pm at Copper Kettle Brewery located at 1338 S. Valentia Street, Denver, CO.