Marshall County Brew Club Brings the Community Together
Writer / Matt Keating
Members of the Marshall County Brew Club believe there is nothing better than a cold brew with friends. They say it’s also a positive way to relax and get to know people with similar interests.
Just ask Michael Lushbaugh, the new president of the Marshall County Brew Club, Indiana’s only brew club that is also a nonprofit organization. He says it’s been a great opportunity to bring different organizations together for a common cause.
“We decided to become a nonprofit so that we could partner with various organizations in the region,” Lushbaugh says. “It has also helped us to build relationships with several local organizations.”
Those relationships have paid off with positive word of mouth in the community.
Lushbaugh says they plan on using their nonprofit status to sponsor events in the area.
“We are also considering a future event with the Marshall County Humane Society,” Lushbaugh says.
Lushbaugh notes that the club is for Marshall County’s home brewers, fermenters and distillers, but their reach extends beyond just brew enthusiasts. He says their focus is on bringing the community together through their organization, and the community response has been great.
“We get overwhelmingly positive feedback from people who sample our beers at the events we go to,” he says. “We are planning to sponsor our own events very soon, possibly in coordination with the Michigan Extract and Grain Association, another home brew club.”
The Marshall County Brew Club includes home brewers who encourage each other to experiment with their craft and share their creations.
“We gather at least once a month to sample our creations, provide honest and constructive feedback, discuss the brewing process and troubleshoot issues,” Lushbaugh says. “Recently we sampled an off-flavor kit to help sharpen our palates to the unwanted mistakes that sometimes occur, how they occur and how to avoid them. In January we gathered to brew lagers in our annual lager day.”
Club members have thoroughly enjoyed their many creations.
“Every member has produced several, if not more, excellent brews,” Lushbaugh says. “Our sour brews are top-shelf. One member brews a blueberry sour known as Big Grimace. Others brew krieks and goses. We cobbled together on a barrel stout, and a barrel-aged Scotch ale.”
The club also has plans to work together to brew a barrel-aged red ale.
“We have also dabbled in meads, gruits and other niche offerings,” Lushbaugh says. “Currently my favorite beer to brew is an old ale, which has been competitive in the American Homebrewers Association national contest.”
Lushbaugh says there are different ways to get involved in the club.
“Potential members or people who want to get involved can engage with us on Facebook, or chat us up at one of the several events we pour our brews at in the region during the year,” he says.
Club members also share base recipes for ales and other brews. They enjoy exchanging brewing tips and ideas.
“I love the fact that not only are we club members, but we are very close friends,” Lushbaugh says. “It’s a chill and relaxed environment where we can get feedback about our beverages, and help give back to the community at charity events. We look forward to continuing our mission to produce and share some of the finest brews in the area.”
For more information on the Marshall County Brew Club, visit facebook.com/marshallcountybrewclub.