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“A Rising Tide – Stories from the Michigan Brewers Guild” Highlights Industry’s Rich History

16-Jan-2019 Michigan Brewers Guild 20th Anniversary Logo

KALAMZOO, Mich) – The Michigan Brewers Guild has published its first book called “A Rising Tide – Stories from the Michigan Brewers Guild” which includes an historical timeline, as well as interviews and stories with more than 35 industry leaders. The project was spearheaded by the Guild’s Executive Director Scott Graham who then collaborated with The Beervangelist Fred Bueltmann, of This Craft Nation, to conduct the interviews and write the stories. Kyle Bice assisted with all photography and assistance from Emily Bennett, Mitten Beer Girl, helped coordinate project logistics. All the pieces were creatively laid out in final form by Mary Haskin Designs.

It was late in the year in 1997 when a handful of brewers gathered at the Hamilton Street Pub in Saginaw to discuss common interests, future goals and the ultimate formation of the Michigan Brewers Guild.

“The Guild has come of age and there have been many changes and developments as the organization has grown to where it is today,” Graham says. “Sharing the stories of the Guild is important to help others understand our history and inspire them to be part of the continued development of the industry as a whole. We hope that by collecting and recording these stories we can contribute to our local beer culture and further develop the beer community that makes Michigan the Great Beer State.”

Throughout 2018, Bueltmann traveled the state interviewing key industry leaders to get their take on the past, present and future of the craft beer industry here in Michigan. The result is a 105-page book draws from stories shared by owners, brewers, promoters and Guild staff, among others. Each person bringing to the table a diverse perspective and unique stories about how the Guild and its members have helped shaped this thriving industry.

“I’ve enjoyed several conversations with Scott Graham about each of our separate ideas about how one would go about writing a history about Michigan beer and Michigan brewing,” Bueltmann wrote in the book’s introduction. “He has a unique perspective on our early days and has connected with so many different aspects of our industry, and I’ve always appreciated his respect for history. It is Scott’s reverence that began to create a sense of urgency – a realization that if we wait too long, these are stories that may not be told, and lessons from legends that may not make it to the next generation of brewers if they’re not shepherded forward.”

Among those featured are Rex Halfpenny, publisher of Michigan Beer Guide; Larry Bell of Bell’s Brewery (starting as Kalamazoo Brewing Company); Derek “Chumly” Anderson from The Vierling in Marquette; John Linardos from Motor City Brewing; Ted Badgerow of Ypsi Ale House; John Svoboda of B.O.B.’s Brewhouse; Tim Suprise of Arcadia Ales; and many, many others.

“Big love to the characters in this story for sharing your time and voices with us,” Bueltmann wrote. “We are richer for having spent time together over beers.”

Purchase your copy of “A Rising Tide” for $20 (plus shipping/handling) at

The Michigan Brewers Guild was formed in 1997 and held its first festival in July 1998. Today, the Guild hosts four festivals dedicated exclusively to Michigan craft beer produced by its nearly 256 member breweries (a number that increases almost on a monthly basis).

The Michigan Brewers Guild is the network of innovative and passionate brewers that serves as the recognized advocate for the Michigan craft beer industry. The mission of the Michigan Brewers Guild is to promote and protect the Michigan craft beer industry with an overarching goal to help craft beer acquire 20% of the market by 2025.

Michigan’s thriving brewing industry contributes more than 14,000 full-time jobs, $662 million in labor income / wages with a total economic impact of over $2 billion. In terms of overall number of breweries, microbreweries and brewpubs, Michigan ranks #4 in the nation – thus supporting its claim as “The Great Beer State.”



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Michigan Brewers Guild is a proud member and supporter of the following organizations:

Brewers Association | Michigan Agri-Tourism Association | Michigan Association of Society Executives | Michigan Beer & Wine Wholesalers Association | Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development | Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) | Michigan Festivals & Events Association | Michigan Grocers Association | Michigan Licensed Beverage Association | Michigan Lodging & Tourism Association | Michigan Restaurant Association | Michigan Snowsports Industries Association | Michigan State University – Extension | Michigan Trails | The Nature Conservancy | Tourism Industry Coalition of Michigan (TICOM) | Travel Michigan (MEDC — Pure Michigan) | West Michigan Tourist Association

Our mailing address: Michigan Brewers Guild • 225 W Washtenaw, Suite C • Lansing, MI 48933

Proud Supporters