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Updated 9/27/2020

The Sower’s Cup
Homebrew Competition


The Sower’s Cup competition committee has come to a hard decision. The COVID-19 numbers are going in the wrong direction as of this date and it doesn’t seem that safety will return before October.

We have looked at all the options, including a smaller competition with fewer judges in a large setting, ‘virtual judging,’ and splitting the competition between other clubs. Any in-person judging seems to be too much of a risk (because it involves way more than just judges!) and virtual will not provide the high quality feedback and results owed to the entrants. As a result, the Sower’s Cup will not occur in 2020, but rather will return in 2021.

Please stay tuned as we work out schedules, dates and timelines. See you in 2021!

– Sower’s Cup Competition Committee

Information below is archived from the 2019 Sower’s Cup. Updates for 2021 coming soon.

Hosted by IBEW Local 265 Banquet Hall

October 11th & 12th, 2019

A BJCP Registered Competition
Open to any U.S. Residents 21 years of age or older

The Sower’s Cup is a Participating Event in:
High Plains Brewer Of The Year 2019 Circuit
Midwest Homebrewer Of The Year 2019 Circuit
Organized by the Lincoln Lagers Homebrew Club of Lincoln, Nebraska



Entry Categories:

We are accepting entries in all categories – including Beer, Cider, and Mead – from the 2015 BJCP Beer, Mead, and Cider style guidelines.

We will provide feedback using standard written BJCP Scoresheets. For more detailed entry information, refer to this page: Entry Limits




The Zipline Brewing Co. Best of Show in Beer Award:

Celebrating the best of the best of the best! The best entry from each judging table will advance to Best Of Show, and will be sampled by our esteemed panel of expert beer tasters – After evaluating every table’s selection, they will determine which beer reigns supreme and wins the 2019 Sower’s Cup beer trophy!

The overall winning beer entry will receive a custom Best Of Show trophy, in addition to a prize package!

Thanks to our friends at Zipline Brewing Co. for sponsoring the 2019 Best Of Show-Beer award!



The Saro Cider Best of Show in Cider Award:

Celebrating the best in class cider in the best way possible! The best entry from each judging table will advance to Best Of Show, and will be sampled by our esteemed panel of expert cider tasters – After evaluating every table’s selection, they will determine which cider reigns supreme and wins the 2019 Sower’s Cup cider trophy!

The overall winning cider entry will receive a custom Best Of Show trophy, in addition to a prize package!

Thanks to our friends at Saro Cider for sponsoring the 2019 Best Of Show-Cider award!



The Happy Raven Best of Show in Mead Award:

Celebrating on the best of mead, the best entry from each judging table will advance to Best Of Show, and will be sampled by our esteemed panel of expert mead tasters – After evaluating every table’s selection, they will determine which beer reigns supreme and wins the 2019 Sower’s Cup mead trophy!

The overall winning mead entry will receive a custom Best Of Show trophy, in addition to a prize package!

Thanks to our friends at The Happy Raven for sponsoring the 2019 Best Of Show-Mead award!


The Patriot Homebrew Supply “Water, Water Everywhere, Not a Drop to Drink” Specialty Beer Contest


This special contest changes each year based on input from our club members. The 2019 special style category is “Water, Water Everywhere, Not a Drop to Drink” – Session Beers brewed under 4.5% ABV! Please be sure to specify a base beer style when entering your beverage so judges can properly evaluate your entry.

The Water, Water Everywhere category is not eligible for the overall Best Of Show contest, but the winning beverage in this category will receive a special award commemorating their achievement.

Entries may be submitted in regular beer categories and in the Water, Water Everywhere contest, but you must register these entries separately, paying both entry fees and shipping separate pairs of bottles for us to evaluate.



Pro Brewery Scale-Up Opportunities


Thanks to our friends at Stone Hollow Brewing Co., CODE Beer Company and Boiler Brewing Company for sponsoring these scale-up opportunities! The top three finalists in each of the following categories will be automatically entered in their respective Scale-Up competitions.

The scale-up eligible BJCP categories include:

Stone Hollow Brewing Company Scale Up Categories:

  • Czech Lager (3A/B/C/D)
  • Irish Beer (15A/B/C)
  • Strong American Ale (22A and 22B ONLY)

CODE Beer Company Scale Up Categories: 

  • Amber Bitter European Lagers (7A/B/C)
  • Dark British Beer (16A/B/C/D)
  • American Porter and Stout (20A/B/C)
  • Smoked Beers

Boiler Brewing Co. Scale Up Categories:

  • American IPA (21A/B)
  • Fruit Beer (29A/B/C)
  • Cider (All)
  • Mead (All)

The winning brewer will be invited to brew a scale-up batch at the sponsoring breweries!

For more information on how to qualify for the scale-up, please visit the Scale-Up Competition page.



Featuring our 2019 Special Guest Speaker, Carvin Wilson!

We’re tremendously excited to have Carvin Wilson join us in Lincoln, NE for this year’s Sower’s Cup Homebrew Competition. If you don’t already know him, Carvin lives in Mesa, Arizona, and is president of the Arizona Homebrewers’ Society.

Carvin is a mead advocate, admirer of mead, passionate beekeeper, collector of honey, lover of yeast, friend of technology and mead maker. He is proud of being able to support small meadery startups, promoting best practices for creating mead, and serving as the moderator of the Modern Mead Makers group on Facebook. After being badgered out of his Hobbit hole, he has exploded on the mead scene and winning over 200 medals to include five Mazer Cups. He’s also a very proud husband to Robin Wilson, grandfather, father, and successful business owner with a portfolio consisting of over fifteen companies. Additionally, he is proud of having over eighty different varieties of honey, accumulating thousands of gallons from all over the world. Carvin is a huge supporter of the AMMA and the Mazer Cup International. He generously hosts several tables at the MCI Mead Mixer to allow smaller meaderies to showcase their meads at the largest mead tasting in the world.


Grand Banquet Dinner & Beer Pairing
Presented by The Gilded Swine

Join us on Saturday for our annual Sower’s Cup beer pairing dinner – featuring an amuse bouche, salad, entree, and dessert course, and we’ve paired each course with a special complimentary beer! There will be 45 seats available for this event. Head on over the the Banquet Dinner page to purchase your tickets.

Banquet tickets are $40.00 each.
Our Sower’s Cup Volunteers/Judges/Stewards receive a $5.00 discount for each judging session they work.
Volunteers/Judges/Stewards driving more than 90 miles get an additional $10.00 off of their ticket.
When you check in at the Banquet table, you’ll redeem your judging session discount tickets (if any) and then we’ll refund you for your discounts!

Check-In Begins around 5:45PM – Banquet Seating at 6PM

Get your tickets here!



The Sower’s Cup Awards Ceremony:

After the banquet dinner concludes, we will wrap up the week by announcing winners at the Sower’s Cup Awards Ceremony and Grand Prize raffle drawings, to be held between 7:30pm-10:00pm. We will draw winners for our awesome Grand Prize Raffle items, including generous contributions from our sponsors. Then, we’ll announce the winners of each category, as well as our Best Of Show winners. Results will be live-tweeted on Twitter via @TheSowersCup for those following us from afar.

All Sower’s Cup volunteers, stewards, beer judges, Lincoln Lagers club members, competition entrants, and delegates from other Nebraska homebrew clubs are all invited to attend the ceremony – and it’ll be live streamed and live tweeted as well!



Sponsorship and Our Current Sponsors:

The Lincoln Lagers are extremely grateful for all of the support we have received from our friends in the local community, craft breweries, brewpubs, industry and homebrewing equipment sponsors, and our volunteers. We’ve set up a special page to show our thanks and to provide you with links to each of their web pages. Please help us reward them for their efforts, and click on through to check them out!

Click here:

Thank You, Sower’s Cup Sponsors!!



Beer Judge, Steward, and Volunteer Information:

Please visit this link for judging & stewarding information:

Judge and Steward Sign Up Page

To assist us in a volunteer role, please sign up for your desired volunteer roles/shifts using this sign-up page:

Volunteer Sign-Up


Judging/Volunteering Perks:

All of our judges, stewards, and volunteers will be provided with delicious fare to reward them for their efforts.

– We’ll be adding more details every day so stay tuned!

For each round that you work, you will receive raffle tickets to enter in our Volunteer prizes raffle.

We will also be selling tickets throughout the weekend for two additional prize raffles: our “Brew Swag Grab Bag” – a very large pile of merchandise and other brewing swag contributed by our competition sponsors – as well as our “Big Daddy Grand Prize Raffle”, which features massively awesome prizes.

One more thing: All judges/stewards/volunteers will receive a commemorative The Sower’s Cup Homebrew Competition beer glass to thank you for your contributions!


21+ Only – ID REQUIRED!

Our Safe Alcohol Consumption Policy:

1. All participants must be at least 21 years old. State Identification will be verified for any participants under 40 years of age.
2. All participants will wear a name tag they receive at the check-in table after their ID has been verified.
3. All participants will sign a Judge Waiver Form or a Volunteer Waiver Form when they check in at the event.
4. All judges & stewards agree to a Code of Conduct upon registering for their participation:
My participation in this judging is entirely voluntary. I know that participation in this judging involves consumption of alcoholic beverages and that this consumption may affect my perceptions and reactions.
By checking this box, I am effectively signing a legal document wherein I accept responsibility for my conduct, behavior and actions and completely absolve the competition and its organizers, individually or collectively, of responsibility for my conduct, behavior and actions.
5. Signs will be posted in the Beer Tapping area reminding participants to drink safely & responsibly.
6. Signs will be posted at building entrances stating ‘No Alcoholic Beverages Beyond This Point’.
7. Information on taxis, Uber/Lyft, or other safe transportation options will be posted at the event.
8. Tapping and adjusting beer kegs will be performed by experienced competition staff only.
9. Dispensing of beer will cooperatively be monitored by the Competition Organizer, Head Steward, Head Judge, and a designated State of Nebraska/Lancaster County Certified Beer Server on staff.

We care about our volunteers’ safety! Drink responsibly!



Entry Judging Locations & Dates:

Pre-Event Judging Sessions:

Pre-Event Judging Session information will be published at the beginning of October. Depending on our entry count & table sizes, early judging rounds might take place on the evenings of Tuesday 10/8, Wednesday 10/9, and Thursday 10/10. Watch for more information coming soon.

Friday & Saturday Entry Judging Sessions:

This year’s Sower’s Cup Homebrew Competition will be held on October 11th and 12th at the IBEW Local 265 Banquet Hall, which is located at 1409 Old Farm Rd., Lincoln, NE.

Further details, including parking options, will be published soon.

Parking & Lodging Information

For detailed information on parking at IBEW Local 265 Banquet, where to stay, and our Beds For Brewers program, click here: Parking & Lodging



Watch or follow our awards ceremony live on October 12th at 7:30pm Central!

Facebook Event Page:

Twitter Feed:

Follow us at @TheSowersCup



Important Dates & Schedule:

Entry registration opens: Sunday, August 11th, 2019
Entry registration deadline: Monday, September 30th, 2019 or once entry limit is reached.

All Entries must be received by 9/30/2019.


Friday Judging Session – tentative check-in time by 5:30pm.

Saturday Morning Judging Session – tentative check-in time 7:30am. Breakfast provided!
Saturday Afternoon Judging Session – tentative check-in time 12:30pm. Lunch provided!

These dates & times are always subject to change as we gain a better idea of how many entries, in what categories, need to be judged. We will do our best to keep the most current and up-to-date information posted here on this web page, at



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Event Details

Date: Saturday, Oct. 12th, 2019
Event Type: AHA/BJCP Competition
Entry Fee: $8.00
Entry Deadline: 9/30/2019



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