Enjoy warmer weather with 8 food events

Stay busy with bacon, beer and gluten-free fests
Bar times
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Thursday, April 27
Get a grasp on hunger and homeless issues in the Madison community through Rock the River. Hear from speakers including Andy Czerkas of the River Food Pantry, Jackson Fonder of Catholic Charities of Madison and Karla Thennes of Porchlight. Live music and heavy appetizers will be provided. For a lower entrance fee, bring three nonperishable food items. $10, 7-8:45 p.m., facebook.com

Pregame the Madison Craft Beer Week with the Cask Ale Fest. Spend an adult night at the Madison Children’s Museum with unlimited samples of more than 25 cask ales. Try varieties from your favorite regional breweries while tasting some new flavors with your commemorative tasting glass. $40, 7-10 p.m., isthmus.com

Friday, April 28
Network with other young professionals while trying food from five local food restaurants, three craft breweries and alpine-style cheese at Connect Socially, Eat Locally. DLUX, Dough Baby Bakery, Salvatore’s Tomato Pies, RED Madison and The Madison Club are among places contributing to the event. Meet new friends, hang out with old ones and explore the Wisconsin Historical Society for a night. $25, 6-9 p.m., facebook.com

With more than 300 things to do and/or taste in over 10 days, Madison Craft Beer Week will fill out your calendar with events that celebrate Madison’s craft beer scene. Try everything from Japanese craft beers to Madison originals, and enjoy a keg competition, beer-battered fish fry, tap takeovers and so much more. April 28-May 7, madbeerweek.com

Saturday, April 29
Take a quick drive to Dodgeville for the Sixth Annual Wisconsin Grilled Cheese Championship. Have you ever heard of anything more Wisconsin? Competitors battle it out to be crowned the champion of grilled cheese. Browse vendors stands, take a trip to the adult beverage area and listen to live music while enjoying the spirit of competition. Free, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. eventbrite.com

Give up gluten at Metcalfe’s Gluten Free Food Fair. Try la ton of gluten-free and gluten-friendly samples. A health and wellness director will provide information and answer any questions about gluten-free living. 11 a.m.-3 p.m., April 29-30, facebook.com

Sunday, April 30
In the words of Ron Swanson, “When it comes to bacon, be prepared.” You better be extremely prepared when celebrating bacon at Bacon Fest. At this bacon bonanza, try bacon chip cookies, bacon caramel cheesecakes, bacon bier cheese soup and more. Karben4 and Next Door Brewing Co. provide beers as pairings to all the bacon goodness. End the night listening to Elvis and Johnny Cash tunes by tribute artists. 2-6 p.m., facebook.com

Take a trip to the Beermuda Triangle of Madison. Join a three-hour tour of Next Door Brewing Co., Alt Brew and One Barrel Brewing Co. by bike. Hop on your bicycle and put the pedal to the metal for happy hour pricing at each location.1-4 p.m. facebook.com