Kentucky Distillers’ Association Cancels 2021 Bourbon Affair

By Allyson Nichols / March 23, 2021

The Kentucky Distillers’ Association recently announced the cancellation of 2021’s Kentucky Bourbon Affair fantasy camp due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Several factors went into the decision, including travel issues, limits on attendance, CDC and social distancing guidelines, uncertainty about variants and conditions in the fall, and caution around distillery workers and resources that are currently off-limits.

“This is the second year we have had to cancel this event, but it is the right and responsible decision to make,” Kentucky Distillers’ Association President Eric Gregory said in a prepared statement. “We are getting closer every day to beating the pandemic. This simply isn’t the time to let our guard down or take any chances with people’s health and safety. It takes time to craft our great Kentucky Bourbon. We can afford to wait one more year.”

Kentucky Bourbon Affair

The 2021 Kentucky Bourbon Affair has been cancelled (image via Kentucky Distillers’ Association)

The event typically welcomes thousands of Bourbon aficionados, enthusiasts and visitors to the Commonwealth for an exclusive week of behind-the-scenes experiences, rare tastings and unique culinary events at the world’s most famous distilleries each year.

Founded in 1880, the Kentucky Distillers’ Association is seen as the voice the voice for Kentucky’s signature Bourbon and distilled spirits industry. Its diverse and growing membership produces the majority of the world’s Bourbon, from historic, global brands to emerging micro distilleries that are fostering the next generation of the Commonwealth’s landmark economic engine and craft.

President and CEO of Louisville Tourism Karen Williams said the KDA has been a great partner in helping put Louisville’s Urban Bourbon Experience on the map by hosting its most prestigious event in Bourbon City since 2014.

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“We support this difficult decision for this year’s Kentucky Bourbon Affair and commit to working with the distilleries to host an even larger event in 2022, including some exciting additions that we hope to share in the near future,” Williams said.

The Kentucky Bourbon Affair was scheduled to coincide with DWP’s Bourbon & Beyond music festival in September, which has been canceled for 2021, as well.