The Great Northern Brewers Club
The Prez Sez, by Kevin Sobolesky - February, 2016


Hello brewing friends! This would be the first Presidential article by yours truly, Kevin Sobolesky. I’ll be taking over to let Peter Hall take a step back after his three years of dutiful service to the club. Thank him the next time you see him as he’s worked hard to sail the USS GNBC through some rough waters.

I’ve been a member since 2010 or so and have been impressed with the talent and camaraderie that exists in the GNBC, that I got involved in running some of our events for the past several years. Many of you know me from having run the Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP) class for the past two years as well as hosting Brewathon in the spring. Now, as President, I’ll be doing what I can to continue this tradition of brewing education and good cheer./p>

I missed a tremendous night in Anchorage, but have been told all about it. January’s annual Great Alaska Beer and Barleywine Festival Thursday night GNBC gathering went off without much more than a hiccup. This is all due to the hard work of GNBCer’s, the Brewers’ Guild of Alaska (BGA),our local distributors, and especially our hosts. David McCarthy and Jason Motyka of 49th State Brewing Company welcomed us in and provided a fantastic atmosphere. Fred Bowman of Portland Brewing shared funny and interesting history of early craft brewing. Garret Marrero shared overflowing enthusiasm for the future of brewing, and commiserated about the logistics of brewing in farflung places. This night took a lot of planning, and was very well worth the effort. Thank you Jason Ditsworth, Rick Armstrong, Ryan Makinster, John Burket, Julie McDonald, and all the GNBCers that stepped up on that night. An extra special thanks is due to James Roberts and the BGA members who contributed to the event. The future looks very promising for January and the GNBC.

Looking to the future, we have a bevy of events to keep us engaged and busy during this dismal winter.

The BJCP class is going to start on the 21st, see the re-print of last month’s article for details. If you have any interest in learning more about classic styles of beer and developing your palate, even if you have no interest in judging, it’s an excellent learning experience and a thoroughly fun time. The exams after the class are available for those who do want to become ranked judges. If anyone is interested in getting involved in helping to assist with the class, such as steward, or admin, please let me know!

Talkeetna Beer Trippin’ is coming together and looks to be April 1-3 this year, a week later than last year. Once again Joe Michael has come up with an excellent t-shirt graphic and our hosts at Denali brewing are excited to have us. Everyone always has a blast taking over the town and going up to judge and deciding who gets the Golden Carboy is one of the highlights of the homebrew judging season. Stay tuned for more details.

The Home Brewer of the Year categories got a shake up this year, now that the 2015 BJCP guidelines are in effect. I’m finalizing that now and will have it mailing listed out soon.

Brewathon will coincide with National Homebrew Day on Saturday, May 7th. A big outdoor brew party with grilling, suds and cheer, what’s not to like? Anyone can bring their gear and brew, and anyone interested in learning is welcome too. It will be hosted at the same place as the last few years, however, I won’t be in town to host, so we need a few people to step up help with setup / cleanup. Please let me know if you’d like to volunteer. Any event is only as good as the efforts made by those who wish it to see it succeed.

Surely, we at the GNBC are proud of the events we host and the resultant joy and cheer we can foment in people’s lives. We are only able to do it with the hard work of our club members who step up and make these things happen. Let’s continue to make this our focus and enjoy many more years of camaraderie and sharing passion for homebrew.

Cheers,
-Prez “Kneel before Zod” Kevin

Hops Wreath

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