Two years ago, it was a blast. I'm thinking last year was a fluke.
Can't remember if you get a bracelet or not. Your ticket gets you a 3oz sampling glass, a bottle of water, and 20 tickets. Each ticket gets you a sample. Two years ago the vendors were pretty lax about actually taking the tickets, last year they more inclined to. If you run out you can always buy more.
Two tips - take water to clean out the glass between samples (as well as drink, the bottle they give you won't be enough) and go after the samples you're dying to try first as they do run out (particularly the more expensive/exotic beer).