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Old 10-26-2009, 06:43 PM   #1
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Default Starting A homebrew club....Questions

Has anyone started a club from scratch? I live in Eagle, Colorado. About 25 minutes west of Vail. I have been looking for local clubs to get involved with and they all just seem too far away. The closest ones I can find seem to be on the front range. (Fort Collins south through Colorado Springs) That is a two hour drive minimum for me.

I was thinking if I can not find one, why not start one. Can anyone give me tips, and things I should think about before attempting this? I found a random post about a possible club in vail that started but the guy who started it does not return emails. I assume the club is defunked.

I know three other people in my area that brew. How would I go about finding others?

I would like to make this a social hobby, not just me sitting in my garage with my girlfriend. Who does not even drink beer.

Thanks for any help.

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Old 10-27-2009, 02:09 AM   #2
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I would like to make this a social hobby, not just me sitting in my garage with my girlfriend. Who does not even drink beer.
She doesn't drink beer? What kind of girlfriend is that?

Just kidding, obviously.

I've not started one, but I've been in a couple, and was a guest speaker at a couple. I think the hardest part -- after finding people who want to join -- is figuring out where to have the meetings. I've met at people's houses, and at bars/brewpubs, and generally I recommend the latter. Talk to your local brewpub, or establishment that has a good selection of beer. Assuming you don't want to spring for a private room, perhaps if you agree to go in on a slow night for them, they'll reserve a couple tables for you, and let you use some glassware, without charging you. Obviously, you will want to get permission to have people bring their own beer in. Though you may have to promise that some of you will order food.

My other suggestion is to be sure each meeting has a theme other than just tasting. It could be discussing a particular style, or if one of the members has encountered a problem in a recent brew -- flavor, equipment, whatever -- members could address that. Another fun thing to try is to have all the members brew exactly the same recipe on the same day, and see how different all the beers turn out. The advantage of this is that if someone joins in after several meetings, they will feel a bit less like an intruder amongst people who already know each other.

Good luck, and enjoy. I agree with you, homebrewing is a hobby to share.
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Old 10-27-2009, 02:13 AM   #3
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She doesn't drink beer? What kind of girlfriend is that?

The best kind to have. The designated driving kind!
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Old 10-27-2009, 02:15 AM   #4
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Be sure to figure out which mix of serious and fun atmosphere that you want. I have been to some where its super serious and the group spends 20 mins criticing each sample that they try and thats pretty much the meeting. The fun part for me is always afterwards when people are outside sitting around, drinking beer and having fun

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Old 10-27-2009, 04:13 AM   #5
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I started out with about 5 strangers sitting at a table talking about beer and our new, "Club".

That was oh, two years ago and now we have about 20 people at each meeting. Many drive 20 to 40 miles to get to our meetings.

I happen to be the chair of the group and find that the members are very interested in promoting the club and brewing. My job as chair is simple. I promote leadership to develop from the membership. It does. We grow.

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Old 10-27-2009, 04:17 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Brewmoor View Post
Has anyone started a club from scratch? I live in Eagle, Colorado. About 25 minutes west of Vail. I have been looking for local clubs to get involved with and they all just seem too far away. The closest ones I can find seem to be on the front range. (Fort Collins south through Colorado Springs) That is a two hour drive minimum for me.

I was thinking if I can not find one, why not start one. Can anyone give me tips, and things I should think about before attempting this? I found a random post about a possible club in vail that started but the guy who started it does not return emails. I assume the club is defunked.

I know three other people in my area that brew. How would I go about finding others?

I would like to make this a social hobby, not just me sitting in my garage with my girlfriend. Who does not even drink beer.

Thanks for any help.
PM Bobby M about this. He will help you out.........
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Old 10-27-2009, 03:12 PM   #7
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There's a great podcast on the Brewing Network's Sunday Show on this topic. You can dowload it free either from iTunes or the Brewing Network's website. It's got a massive amount of useful info.

I suspect starting with just you & the 3 other homebrewers you know will be great. It will expand -- you will find others & they will find you!

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Old 10-27-2009, 03:30 PM   #8
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There's a great podcast on the Brewing Network's Sunday Show on this topic. You can dowload it free either from iTunes or the Brewing Network's website. It's got a massive amount of useful info.

I suspect starting with just you & the 3 other homebrewers you know will be great. It will expand -- you will find others & they will find you!
I was looking for this, I'm interested myself. I couldn't find it, do you know the name of the episode, or know around when it was aired?
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Old 10-27-2009, 03:48 PM   #9
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You can be as casual or organized as you want. However, since you're the one that is going to put the legwork in, you can make it anything you want until it gets big enough to morph into what it will become. I would jot down a mission statement as to what you think the club should be. Create a website. Register the club with AHA and get on the list. Find a regular meeting place and try to make it the same night every month for consistency. The hardest thing is probably getting the first 10 people to show up regularly. Until then, you have to create the buzz.

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Old 10-27-2009, 03:53 PM   #10
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I was looking for this, I'm interested myself. I couldn't find it, do you know the name of the episode, or know around when it was aired?
The date for this episode is 3-11-07.
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