By Marc Bona, The Plain Dealer

Cleveland, Ohio -- From Cleveland Beer Week to the federal government shutdown to an assortment of other events, the beer is flowing in Greater Cleveland:

Cleveland Beer Week, Belgian-style: Hundreds of events are on tap for Cleveland Beer Week, which is Oct. 18-26. We've written about the collaborations between local brewers. Now it's taking on an international flavor. Duvel USA is partnering with McNulty's Bier Markt for a Belgian Saturday Social 2-5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 19. Eight Belgian brewers will be featured along with "Belgian-inspired fare." Not sure about the food, but the beer sounds good. The event is right up Bier Markt's alley; it maintains an impressive display of Belgian ales on tap.

Beer week dinner: AMP 150 and Great Lakes Brewing Co. will hold a five-course dinner pairing beers with dishes at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25, at the end of Cleveland Beer Week. Engine 20 (hoppy American pale ale), Dortmunder Gold, Oktoberfest, Nosferatu (imperial red ale) and Edmund Fitzgerald porter are lined up. Cost is $55 plus tax and tip. Reservations are required; go to Amp 150 is at 4277 W. 150th St., in the Cleveland Airport Marriott.

Shutdown on beer: Add Matt Chappel of Cleveland's Indigo Imp Brewery to the list of brewers who could be affected by the federal government shutdown. Brewers need federal approval on labels, and with the Treasury Department's Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau on hiatus, a backlog could be coming. That in turn could delay releases of new beers. (We spoke with Fred Karm of Akron's Hoppin' Frog recently about why brewers need government approval.) Chappel told The Plain Dealer it is a concern. "We've been working on an anniversary beer to have ready for December," he said. "Now all of a sudden even if I have my labels ready, I might have to push it back." The fifth-anniversary ale is a Flanders red, "an old-fashioned French and Belgian ale" that is a little sour, he said. "There's gonna be a backlog," Chappel said. "It could be a couple of months."

Cheers to November: West Point Market in Akron will kick off November with an all-Ohio beer tasting and end the month with a Christmas-ale tasting. The store will hold the Ohio tasting in conjunction with the finals of the second annual home-brew contest 7-9 p.m. Friday, Nov. 1. Eight Ohio breweries will be represented, with more to come. An American barley wine from last year's winners, Nick and Justin Herstich, is available in bottles exclusively at the store. Cost of the tasting ($25 advance, $30 at the door) includes appetizers and music from Josh Rzepka Trio. Go to for reservations, which are "strongly encouraged" West Point's beer guru Dave Lukens tells The Plain Dealer. The Christmas-ale tasting is set for 7-9 p.m. Friday, Nov. 29.

Final tally: The three annual Brew at the Zoo events at the Akron Zoo this year exceeded last year's attendance, despite the last one being on the same date as the Cleveland Indians hosting a Wild Card playoff game at Progressive Field. The zoo's David Barnhart tells The Plain Dealer that attendance jumped from 871 in 2012 to 1,229 this year. He said a DJ kept the crowd informed of the game by announcing updates. An assortment of craft beer was served at the tastings, which were held June 12, July 17 and Oct. 2.
Special guests: Lance Rice an autistic man from Vermilion and prolific beer-can collector and researcher attended the Great American Beer Festival in Denver this month. Rice, who The Plain Dealer's Michael Heaton wrote about in April, was there with his nephew, Aaron. The Rices stopped at Great Lakes Brewing Co. and other breweries this year as part of a kickstarter campaign to raise money for travels to breweries and to make a documentary and write a book about the project.

Finally: A reminder that the Lake Erie chapter of the Brewery Collectibles Club of America will have a show noon-4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 19, at Great Lakes' tasting room, 2701 Carroll Ave., in Ohio City. Antique signs, trays, bottles, caps and cans will be available for buying, selling and trading. Free admission.