We plan library programs months in advance. In February and March, I was trying to think up programs that would be interesting in the heat of June. I remembered my step-father and how much he enjoyed brewing-and drinking his own beer. Do other folks want to make their own beer? Do they know where to start?

I did some research, (it’s what librarians do well) and I discovered the Bluffs Brewing Guild who were excited to talk about homebrewing. I am happy to announce we have an amazing panel of experienced brewers lined up to show us how it’s done on July 19 at 6:30 p.m. in the Gering Library Community Room. 

This is your chance to ask questions and find out how to get started making your own beer. Kristian Schank, Zak Griffith, and Jason Zitterkopf have a combined 35 years of brewing experience. They will not only tell us how it’s done, they are bringing their equipment to show us how it’s done. 

Attendees will have a chance to win “How to Brew: Everything You Need to Know to Brew Great Beer Every Time” by John J. Palmer. If you want even more information, we have two new books about brewing your own beer available to check out at the library. Unfortunately due to state regulations, we are unable to provide samples of the homebrew at this library program. But we did consider it.

Some fun facts about homebrewing. Many Americans legally brewed their own beer before Prohibition. Many illegally brewed it during Prohibition and it was safer than many of the home- distilled liquors available at that time. When Prohibition was repealed, homebrewing was still illegal at the federal level. In 1979 California Senator Alan Cranston stuck legislation into a transportation bill during Jimmy Carter’s administration that legalized homebrewing. This opened a world of opportunities for beer enthusiasts.

In conjunction with the Gering Library Foundation, this fall the library will host a monthly program called Books and Brews. This series will focus on how to make a variety of boutique beverages including coffees, teas and kombucha. Be watching Facebook for more information. We also post our programs on our website calendar, and, of course, in the library.

I am always looking for programming suggestions. If you want to learn about something, chances are, someone else will want to learn as well. If you want to share a talent or skill with others, I can probably make it happen. 

If you knew Bill Enderle, he might have offered to share one of his homebrews with you. If you took him up on it you may have noticed he kept it basement-temperature. You don’t have to drink your homebrew like the English, you can refrigerate it- there is no shame in wanting a cold beer. If you want to learn how to make your own beer, or just want to learn what goes into making your favorite beverage, please join us July 19 at 6:30 p.m.

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