One thing is for sure, #beersavesplaces! We all have our favorite craft breweries and at the RBCoYP Launch Party on Friday, April 8, we are going to put them head-to-head.
Here is how it works….
-Bring your favorite local 6-pack or growler to the RBCoYP party! Your 6-pack is your official entry into the competition, so if you need something to sip on before the competition starts… grab from the share table or bring extra brews.
-The competition begins promptly at 9pm. Get ready to sample the Rust Belt.
-Each beer will compete in brackets (NCAA style) against other beers from its respective states. We will try to match IPA vs IPA, Porter vs Porter, or Cider vs Cider (we can’t let beer have all the fun)…. Until we reach the top beverage of each state. There is a catch- you cannot be a taste tester* for your state!
-Once the top beverage from each state is selected, the states will compete for the glory of being the best Rust Belt Craft Beer! The winner will receive more than just glory, but that is a secret for now.
Don’t drink beer? Don’t worry! You can vote for best label! And if you try to slip a craft soda into the competition, we won’t be mad. We will be excited to sample one of your state’s delicious products.
*Taste testers will each get a sample of the beverage, not a full can. Think of this like the biggest beer flight you have ever experienced.
I, along with many millennial-aged Buffalonians who love architecture and history, help to save buildings from the wrecking ball every day under the advocacy group called Buffalo’s Young Preservationists.
We’ve worked to save buildings of all sizes including Trico (where the windshield was invented), Wildroot (largest hair product supplier in 1940), an administrative building for our largest steel company, and many dollar houses that patiently wait for new owners to re-love them. We do things differently – plastering hearts on buildings, creating dynamic campaigns, and pushing for policy changes to enhance preservation of our historic neighborhoods.
Wildroot : Thanks to Chrissy and Mark for taking the lead on this, Wildroot was listed this year as “Seven to Save” by the Preservation League of New York State. It’s at risk because the owner died and it’s in estate hell…the vacancy vortex is in full force!! We keep and eye on it by cleaning it up, painting it, and securing it from time to time.
Crosby : Essentially every major applianceof the 20th century had its parts stamped at the Crosby plant. It’s up for demolition now because the owners were not aware of its potential ….but we’ve created a fun campaign and the owners are now looking into stabilization!! We go before the common council next month to fight for it to have local landmark designation!
North Park Library: A historic library in an area surrounded by parking lots… This is up for demolition because it has been vacant for five years and a developer wants to put a new mixed-use building in its place. The library is really loved by the community! We’ve started a petition which has hundreds of signatures and we go before the common council on April 12th to fight for it to have a local landmark designation!
The Bachelor: Buffalo’s oldest apartment building in downtown, the Bachelor was built for single working men (thus the name the bachelor!) It is in danger because a local developer wants to tear it down for a hotel and parking garage…While restoring another building in the process but removing this one. We go before the common council in April to fight for its local landmark designation.
Other than that, we will likely do our happy hours, board and seals and other random fun things that we typically do every year!
Now, since this Coalition (and by extension, this blog) is focused on historic preservation, we’re going to stick to that topic. So whether it’s adaptive reuse of a historic structure or incorporating the neighborhood’s history into a brand, Pittsburghers take their history – and their booze – very seriously.
War Streets Brewery
One of the most exciting developments in the ‘Burgh’s beer scene, especially to Northsiders, is the soon-to-open War Streets Brewery. Housed in a 138-year-old firehouse in the historic Mexican War Streets neighborhood, the brewery is a phenomenal reuse of a vacant structure that will be a great addition to a dense, walkable neighborhood.
The War Streets Brewery, sadly, isn’t slated to open until Spring. But since we’re so very charismatic, we’ve conned convinced the owners to let us in for a sneak peek of their building and beer during the April meeting of the Rust Belt Coalition in Pittsburgh.
Arsenal Cider House
The Arsenal Cider House is another Pittsburgh institution that jumped from nothing to huge success in the seven years they’ve been in business. Arsenal, which operates out of a Victorian rowhouse in the Lawrenceville neighborhood, quickly grew from an unknown growler-fill-only operation to being tapped all through the city.
Why “Arsenal,” you might ask? Fun fact – Pittsburgh was a major supplier of munitions during the Civil War, and the enormous Allegheny Arsenal was the epicenter of it all. It was on the plot where Arsenal Park now resides, and you may be wondering where it is. Well, in 1862, it exploded. Boom. Gone. True story – look it up. There’s only a few original buildings still standing, but in that area there are many buildings and businesses named after the Arsenal, and the Cider House is one of the newest to honor the neighborhood’s history.
Seriously. Look it up.
Spring Hill Brewing
Not to return to the Northside, but we’re going to return to the Northside. Up in Spring Hill, a hundred-year-old social hall and nursery are going to be transformed into a self-contained farm-style brewery. At the site of the old Workingmens’ Beneficial Union Hall (which is a fantastic name…I can’t get over it), beer and grub grown, brewed, and cooked on-site will be served at Spring Hill Brewing.
There’s not a huge amount of info out there about this project yet, but it’s supposed to be up and running in the fall. Check out this article for a pretty good breakdown of the concept behind the project and where the founders envision it going. We’re excited!
Well, that’s just a sampling of some of the businesses in the Steel City getting in on the small-scale, local alcohol boom we’re finding ourselves in. And luckily for us preservationists, the owners of the breweries, distilleries, and cider houses in Pittsburgh tend to have a respect for and interest in our local history and preserving our buildings and neighborhoods.
We’ll definitely be showing more alcohol-related preservation successes during the Rust Belt Coalition of Young Preservationists meetup in April. And get excited – local brews from throughout the Rust Belt will be the centerpiece of our reception on Friday! We’re encouraging everyone to bring a six pack of beers from their respective metro to see who brews the best booze. See you then!
Since starting in 2014, the Young Ohio Preservationists (YOP) have been exploring opportunities and trying to create a vision for what we want to be and how we want to move the needle of preservation in the Midwest. We are excited to announce and tease some of what we have planned for 2016!
-Our first scholarship program! The Young Ohio Preservationists are partnering with Schooley Caldwell Associates to create an Emerging Professionals session at Heritage Ohio’s Annual Conference AND Emerging Professionals Conference Scholarship. This competition will grant an Ohio resident under 40 the opportunity to present on how they are part of the next wave of preservation! Winners will receive complimentary conference registration, 2-nights at the conference hotel, and $100 travel stipend. Keep your eyes wide-open for the upcoming official competition announcement.
-Preservation Month will end with our first Architectural Trivia event (May 31)! In partnership with the Society of Architectural historians, we will live stream Ohio architectural trivia! The Society of Architectural Historians have been creating a nationwide Archipedia (basically a way nerdier Wikipedia). To align with the launch of Ohio’s Archipedia page, YOP will be hosting a rootin’ tootin’ BYOB trivia night in the German Village Historic District. In person competitors will have the chance to win prizes, and we will be interacting with online participants throughout the night.
-Mark your calendars for October 7,8, and 9! The weekend leading up to Heritage Ohio’s annual conference, the Young Ohio Preservationists will host a regional RBCoYP meet-up in Cincinnati. Cincinnati had major preservation wins the past few years – the Museum Center, Music Hall, the progress in the Over-the-Rhine historic district, and we cannot wait to share some of Ohio’s treasures with you.
Be a part of the Young Ohio Preservationists and help us become a valuable resource for the next generation of preservationists. Join our mailing list and reach out if you have any questions or want to get involved!
In 2015, Preserve Greater Indy kicked off Preservation Month with a whirlwind tour of Indiana craft breweries, highlighting how their commitment to historic preservation and community revitalization has transformed Indiana’s urban landscape and breathed new life into rural communities. Indiana craft beer is driven by a creative, dedicated, and collaborative group of small business owners who are, without a doubt, passionate about their trade as well as their impact on their local communities. Most importantly, they’re saving authentic places and revitalizing communities. Check out these examples that span our state from north to south and we think you’ll agree.
Crown Brewing – Crown Point
Crown Brewing takes its name and imagery from a regional brewery that called Crown Point home during pre-prohibition times. This craft brewery is located in the former Lake County Jail’s boiler and mechanical building (hence the smokestack). The jail, built in three separate stages, dates back to 1882. The site, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, includes the former sheriff’s county residence, prisoner cell blocks, jail staff quarters, warden’s residence, prisoner cell blocks, and jail yard. One of the FBI’s most wanted gangsters, John Dillinger, escaped from this jail when he was jailed there in 1934. Crown Brewing has won numerous accolades, including two World Beer Cup awards, and hosts many annual events, including their Crown Beer Festival which attracts brewers and attendees from three states. Cheers to Crown Brewing for their dedication to preserving our past, community revitalization, and crafting outstanding local beer.
Indiana City Brewing Company – Indianapolis
During and after prohibition, Indiana (and America) lost a great number of breweries and brewery buildings. Indianapolis is lucky to have Indiana City Brewing Company, whose dedication to historic preservation led the team to repurpose this late 1880’s building, which was originally home to The Home Brewing Company. Owner Ray Kamstra was quoted as saying, “Opening Indiana City Brewing in The Home Brewing Co. Bottling House brought beer back to one of Indy’s few remaining pre-prohibition era brewery buildings and provides the best atmosphere for fulfilling our mission of adding to Indy’s craft beer culture by celebrating the creative community within.” This is a must-see preservation story and something we in Indianapolis are proud to call our own.
Tin Man Brewing Company – Evansville
Located in an 1869 beauty, Tin Man Brewing Company repurposed a historic building and revitalized an entire section of Franklin Street. Tin Man Brewing is known locally for their robot themed logo and canned beer, and credited nationally for their dedication to environmentally sound business practices and as the third brewery in the country to use a mash filter. This is an essential stop for anyone visiting Evansville.
Although we are still less than a year old, Preserve Greater Indy is pushing ahead with many great projects and events for 2016. As our name suggests, Preserve Greater Indy allows our group to reach not just Indianapolis, but historic communities within about an hour’s drive, with events and attendees from as far as Muncie and Bloomington. And although we don’t have “young preservationists” in our name, we model ourselves after other young preservationist groups. Our mission is to connect and engage advocates of preservation in Central Indiana, and we hope to do this through social events, service projects, education programs, and more!
Our official kick-off was May 2015 with #beersavesplaces and a Happy Hour at Indiana City Brewing. Since then, we’ve had happy hours at historic bars, participated in two service events, road tripped to Franklin for the holidays, and most recently, completed a heart bombing campaign in Muncie.
We’ve certainly had growing pains in our first year and have been fortunate to connect with other young preservationists groups through this Coalition to share ideas on how to structure and focus our organization. Our first major item for 2016 is restructuring our organization – we’ve moved from committee work to a board that will plan and implement programs. Our board members will be empowered to plan programs and events that interest them and our Preserve Greater Indy audience.
Being a young organization also means we’re working on regular communication through our social media channels and starting an e-newsletter. We’re just launching our first e-newsletter this week and hope to continue this e-newsletter once a month. We’d love our other young preservationist friends from around the Rust Belt to sign up!
Several programs and events are in the works for 2016. For social events, we hope to host at least one happy hour. We have two instameets in the works to highlight historic architecture. We’re planning a painting for preservation event with the Rivoli Theater, one of our favorite sites in Indianapolis. Lastly, we hope to soon host an “Ask an Architect” social hour that will allow young preservationists to meet with young architects in Indianapolis, providing us an opportunity to collaborate between our fields. We have many more ideas, so keep an eye on our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to see what we’re planning!
Our home base for the weekend will be Pittsburgh’s Northside, specifically the neighborhoods of Manchester, the Mexican War Streets, and East Deutschtown. Check out the yellow markers on the map in A Beginner’s Guide to Pittsburgh, Part 2 for an idea of what the heck we’re talking about.
And we still have space! Pittsburgh YPA members and allies are opening up their homes to host out-of-town guests. We’ll be getting in touch with you directly to follow up about placing you in a YPA house or helping you find private accommodations, depending on what you indicate on your registration. If you told us you can find your own accommodations, then stay tuned for schedule updates to find out when and where to meet up with us! The weekend begins on 7pm on Friday, April 8th, or whenever you get into Pittsburgh.
SPEAKING OF MEETUPS! We are planning lots of great things to do! The purpose of the first meeting of the Rust Belt Coalition is to get to know each other, and we’re going to have a lot of fun doing it. Plan on getting together for food and drinks and chit chat on Friday and Saturday night, and breaking off into groups for excursions around Pittsburgh on Saturday afternoon (while you’re at it, take our quick survey to let us know what you’d like to do!) Rivers of Steel Heritage Area will be offering a guided tour of Carrie Furnace, a former blast furnace site, for the entire group on Sunday.
Not familiar with the Steel City, but want to have a voice in what we do in April at the first meeting of the Rust Belt Coalition of Young Preservationists? Here’s a quick breakdown of potential activities we’ve pulled together so you can make an informed vote about what you want to see most! When you’re done reading, take our quick survey and weigh in on the itinerary!
Downtown to Mt Washington Bike Tour
Downtown. Central Business District. Golden Triangle. Whatever you want to call it, it’s the economic hub of the region and the historic location of Fort Pitt and the town that would grow up to be Pittsburgh. While modern skyscrapers might catch your eye, there are plenty of historic sites to check out. Flat and very bikeable, we can cover a lot of ground on two wheels. Mount Washington is right across the Monongahela from Downtown and offers fantastic views of the city and its rivers. We’ll pick up bikeshare bikes from the Northside, head over to tour Downtown, drop off the bikes, and then take the incline up to Mount Washington. What’s an incline? It’s an awesome little trolley that runs up the side of the mountain, and a great way to get up to the summit.
Pittsburgh City Steps Urban Hike (Location to Be Determined)
Pittsburgh is one of the hilliest cities in the United States, and boasts both the steepest public street and the most public steps in the country (eat your heart out, San Francisco). Some hillsides are so steep that there aren’t formal streets: the steps are considered the street itself, and the houses are only accessible from the city steps! We’re planning to go on an urban hike up and down the city steps, taking in vistas that rival Mount Washington and talking about the topography that created Pittsburgh’s many neighborhoods. The City Steps were a YPA Top Ten Preservation Opportunity in 2015, so this is an activity near and dear to our hearts.
“Crossroads of the World”: Hill District Foot Tour
Just east of Downtown, the Hill District is one of the most storied areas of the city. Before some disastrous urban planning mistakes devastated the neighborhood, it was home to a thriving, vibrant middle-class African-American community, among other diverse ethnic and racial groups. From jazz musicians to photographers to playwrights, the Hill provided a cultural melting pot where artistic genius was fostered. However, redevelopment threatens many culturally important sites throughout the Hill. Local historian Terri Baltimore has offered to accompany us on a walking tour through the neighborhood highlighting and telling stories about the buildings and (more importantly) the people of “Little Harlem.”
Blue-Collar to Brooklyn: Lawrenceville Foot Tour
Lawrenceville is one of those things that gets mentioned all the time in any national press about Pittsburgh (right after they talk about the french fry sandwich thing…), and for good reason. In a very short time, it has transformed from a working-class neighborhood during steel’s heyday, to a disinvested section of town after the mills moved out, to the “it” area of the 21st century, while preserving almost all of its historic architecture. Butler Street, its main drag, is full of boutiques, bars, and popular restaurants while supporting antique brick rows behind. Lawrenceville is a living example of the active urban transitions happening in Pittsburgh.
Vacant not Blighted: Wilkinsburg Foot Tour
Wilkinsburg is the definition of a community with “good bones.” The architecture in this borough just outside the City of Pittsburgh is phenomenal, especially in its business district. Served by the city’s East Busway and bordering some great Pittsburgh neighborhoods, it is in a prime location. But Wilkinsburg has seen tough times recently. Lack of a sufficient tax base has caused it to begin sharing services with the city. But there is hope – young artists and artisans have been moving into the area to start up businesses and buy their own homes, and a “Vacant House Tour” highlighted properties which, with some work, could make for fantastic homes. We’re going to take the Busway out and explore this borough with a bright future.
Carrie Furnace Tour
The Carrie Blast Furnace is one of the few still-standing furnaces from the days of Big Steel. Part of the Homestead Steel Works (of Homestead Strike Fame), it was one of the largest mills in the United States and part of Andrew Carnegie’s steel empire. We got a slot reserved for us to go on a tour of the site, led by a Rivers of Steel tour guide. This activity is $15/person.
Rust Belt Capitol: A Stop in Braddock, PA
After the Carrie Furnace Tour, we’ll be hanging out in nearby Braddock, a steel town that has lost 90% of its population from its peak. A neighborhood on its way back, it has amazing history, fantastic buildings, and a really cool mayor. We’re going to check out some of the sites in this great borough until you decide to head home.
The first meeting of the Rust Belt Coalition of Young Preservationists is a little over a month away, and we are toiling away here at Headquarters trying to make sure you have a good time! But we want your input too. Fill out the below survey to let us know what you’d like to see during your visit in Pittsburgh!
Do you like our “Local Brews on Tues” series? Taste it for yourself! Join us on April 8th – 10th to taste the finest beers from around the Rust Belt. To kick off our weekend in PGH, we will be doing a “BYOB” Friday night opening event where everyone brings a six pack or growler of local beer with them. Thanks to the National Trust for Historic Preservation, we will also be able to serve some of the finest Pittsburgh foods drink, talk and meet so many cool young preservationists from across the Rust Belt!!! YES, you heard that right. Regional. Beer. Potluck. #BYOBrustbeltbeerparty
Now, back to our regularly scheduled program….
If there is one thing that is even better than beer, it’s when breweries open and make good beer inside historic buildings. Buffalo just happens to do this extremely well.
Buffalo is known for many things including chicken wings, snow and our 4am bar closings. 4am bar closings? Yes you read that right! We know how to drink beer. A mayor once said “Stay inside, grab a six-pack and watch a good football game,” when a giant snowstorm was coming. We have a grain elevator wrapped to look like a six pack of beer and Labatt Blue moved their headquarters to Buffalo because we drank the their beer the most out of any area. I won’t even begin to talk about our awesome ability to kayak down a river filled with grain elevators and bar crawl at the same time! (Editor’s note: Bernice, don’t lie. You’re totally going to do that in a future post. You’re too excited about it not to.)
On top of that, it is no secret that BYP got its start by getting together to drink beers in local historic taverns and talking about preservation battles. Our happy hours are fairly infamous because they tend to attract 50 – 100 very passionate preservationists from around the area. Another reason why we love local taverns and breweries!
We have something we like to call “Beer Oriented Development” here in Buffalo, NY. Coined by Buffalo City Planner Chris Hawley, BOD is defined as “the ability of local craft brewing and distilling to attract people, dollars, and development.” Basically that means, when a brewery or cool craft tap house opens in a typically underserved area, it kickstarts attention and development in that area. BOD, much like TOD (transit oriented development), is a great way to help grow communities and increase the excitement needed to begin a rebound.
Let’s explore the brewing scene in Buffalo!
Pearl Street Brewery:
Perhaps our oldest brewery, Pearl Street opened in the late 80’s in Downtown Buffalo where saving buildings and drinking locally-made beer was pretty much unheard of. Pearl Street decided to set up shop downtown, saving an incredible set of brick row buildings from the wrecking ball for their brewery! Rumor has it that the owner of Pearl Street has some serious ties in Colorado with Breckenridge Brewery, which is a Denver staple. Try the Lighthouse or Trainwreck – two of Pearl Street’s classics!
This brewery decided to land inside one of Buffalo’s very few saw tooth buildings on the West Side of Buffalo. Resurgence is known for their Sponge Candy Stout, giant Jenga and their large patio. Before Resurgence, houses were selling for $1, if they dodged the demolition. Now? Two art galleries and a local fitness company have opened and a wood fired pizza place on the way.
Community Beer Works:
CBW wins the “first in” award. In 2012, these guys took the
plunge in Buffalo when very few would. They serve delicious unfiltered beer and do it very very well. They teamed up with Hydraulic Hearth to create a satellite brewery so Hydraulic could serve the freshest beer to their customers. CBW is nearing a big change – soon enough they will have a large tap room inside of a historic building located on the lower west side in an area that is ripe for BOD.
Big Ditch Brewing Co. :
Big Ditch Brewing Co. champions our Buffalo history all day, every day. “Strength, Pride and Ambition, the history of the Erie Canal” is a mural that looks over the brewery and happens to be one of the most highly instagrammed photos of 2015 in Buffalo. Well, Big Ditch took over a nondescript warehouse and turned it into an epic brewery equipped with meeting spaces, garage doors for the summer and a second floor. Located in Downtown Buffalo, Big Ditch helped to inspire others to invest in what now is known as “restaurant row” along Ellicott Street.
Gene McCarthy’s :
Perhaps my all-time favorite chicken wing spot is also a brewery! Gene’s has done a lot for the old first ward over the last 100 years. Despite the fact that it hasn’t changed much over the years, Just recently, there have been proposals for a new cafe and their first shipping container house. If you go here, order the McCarthy’s wings – they are delicious!!
And there’s so much more! Including Flying Bison, Ellicottville Brewing Co., 42 North and many others… I feel like I could write forever but luckily for us, someone already did! You can read this powerpoint equipped with some of the best beer quotes I’ve ever seen. And if you’re thirsty for more, click here for the official buffalo beer guide.