MarchFest welcomes media on the day, to arrange a media pass please contact ​ [email protected] (terms & conditions apply)
After a successful sold-out event in 2018, the iconic Marchfest craft beer and music festival is back and better than ever. Held on the 9th March at Founders Park in Nelson - New Zealand’s main hop growing region (top of the South Island). The festival coincides with Nelson’s 3rd annual Beer Week (March 2nd - 9th).

NEWS! - Marchfest goes earlier for 2019!
Marchfest organisers have decided to bring the event forward by two weeks in order to catch the better weather. “We normally catch the first cooler temperatures of Autumn,” says co-owner Mic Dover, “so this is an attempt to be a bit warmer and drier on the big day!”

2019 Key Messaging:
  • Set in the historic village of Founders Heritage Park, Nelson
  • 10 of the best Top of the South brews
  • 5 specially selected NZ wide brews.
  • NEW Tasting Bar
  • Cool live music including Newtown Rocksteady and legendary Kiwi rockers The Narcs! 
  • Family-friendly entertainment, games and activities • Nelson Beer Week from March 2nd - 9th.
  • Local artisan food and a range of non-alcoholic Beverages
  • Option to join the Gourmet Beer and Food Matching Lunch

NEW for 2019 the MarchFest ‘TASTING BAR’.
Created for festival-goers to sample a paddle of 5 taster-sized brews, co-owner Eelco Boswijk is thrilled with the new addition. “We are adding a new marquee next to the Brew Zone, dedicated to the tasting of this year’s 15 brand new beers. It’s a great opportunity for beer lovers to sit at tables, sample a few beers, before going to the main bars to enjoy more of their favourites.

For this year's Marchfest 15 breweries have been chosen. 10 local breweries and 5 from around New Zealand have made the cut, and a great range of beers and beer styles will make their world debut on March 9th at Founders Park, Nelson. The chosen new beers comprise 5 APA/IPAs, 3 Lager/Pilsners, 2 Pale Ales, 2 Wheat Beers, 2 Stout/Porters and one Sour/Fruit.

  • Nelson-based Middle East-flavoured, group The Marianne Navon Trio
  • Australian musician Ben Catley, expect high energy music cocktail performance.
  • Popping up around Founders Park will be post-modern jazz-funk buskers Buskudara.
  • Reggae/world music 10-piece Ras Judah and Culture Embassy will provide the afternoon sounds.
  • Legendary Kiwi 80s rockers The Narcs take a power chord trip down memory lane.
  • Live music/e-beats duo, Press Roll feat Ryan Beehre (ex-Minuit).
  • Newtown Rocksteady 12-piece skanking Wellington legends guaranteed to get you dancing!


MarchFest has received sponsorship funding for this year’s event from the Nelson Events Marketing & Development Programme, which is funded by the Nelson City Council. The Programme’s objective is to stimulate Nelson City’s economy in the shoulder and off seasons by bringing new spending through visitors coming to Nelson for distinct events.