A weekly web column by Roger A. Baylor (originally posted at the NA Confidential blog)
My pal TR called for a catch-up chat. It had been a week since my return from four months in Europe, and I was woefully depleted of gossip, so TR suggested lunch at a joint called Sportstime Pizza, apparently recently established somewhere near Grant Line Road. I couldn’t really form a mental picture of the place until he resorted to a past-tense directional comparison: “It’s where the Noble Roman’s used to be.”
It was 1987, and now, as thousands of years of human history pass by, I join the chorus of individuals always asking, “Where did the time go?”
I couldn’t tell you the answer, except to mischievously recall another friend’s longtime assertion that his eventual autobiography would bear the title, “What I Remember.” Not mine, which is slated to be called “Beer, Bile and Bolsheviks: A Fermentable Life," but there’s little time to write the book because the business I inadvertently stumbled into two decades ago still keeps me ridiculously busy amid a career of selling the idea of beer, a course that somehow took shape during gaps between bouts of drinking lots and lots of it.
Naturally, none of this could have taken place without the work, contributions and input of so many people, from co-owners Amy and Kate through all our employees, customers and folks far too numerous to count – past, present and future. At the risk of sounding trite, I’ll consciously echo Queen, who said it best.
I've taken my bows
And my curtain calls
You brought me fame and fortune and everything that goes with it
I thank you all
But it's been no bed of roses
No pleasure cruise
I consider it a challenge before the whole human race
And I ain't gonna lose
Unfortunately, as I’m channeling the late and lamented Freddie Mercury, the missus is assuming the voice of barrister’s mate Hilda Rumpole to remind me that any mention of “fortune” is utterly misplaced in my professional context. It’s true, although the value of enjoying one’s work and being paid to drink beer whilst performing it … that’s truly priceless.
The New Albanian Brewing Company will mark its first quarter-century of existence with a day-long picnic and concert at New Albany’s Riverfront Amphitheater on Sunday, July 22, 2012.
As most readers probably know, nowadays the original location near Grant Line Road is known as the NABC Pizzeria & Public House, incorporating Sportstime, Rich O’s Public House (1992) and the 2002 addition of craft brewing on site. NABC’s most recent progeny (2009) is NABC Bank Street Brewhouse, located in New Albany’s historic business district downtown.
“25 Years of Beer & Loathing” is what we’re calling the fete, and NABC’s 25th anniversary celebration will be a day-long musical, family-friendly event with food, activities and refreshments suitable for all ages. The venue is New Albany’s Riverfront Amphitheater, from 10:00 a.m. to sundown on Sunday, July 22. The Amphitheater is located by the Ohio River in downtown New Albany, with ample parking available by the levee at the foot of Pearl Street.
There is no cover charge for this event, and it’ll be cash 'n' carry for food, drinks and vending. Proceeds after expenses will be disbursed in the form of grants to Rauch Inc., the Isabel Jade Pickhardt Fund and New Albany First.
So that all of our current employees can participate in recalling 25 Years of Beer & Loathing, NABC’s Bank Street Brewhouse will be closed on Sunday, July 22, although the Build Your Own Bloody Mary Bar will be operating at the Riverfront Amphitheater from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. (see below). Following in alphabetical order are details about what to expect.
NABC’s draft truck (Rosa L. Stumblebus) will be on hand with old favorites and special releases. We’ll be pouring all four of NABC’s 10th brewery anniversary beers: Bourbondaddy, Stumblebus, Turbo Hog and Scotch de Ainslie. There’ll also be a special 10th anniversary session ale called Get Off My Lawn. In addition, limited quantities of cask-conditioned Naughty Girl (double dry-hopped) and Oaked Choufftimus will be served while they last.
Build Your Own Bloody Mary Bar
A Bank Street Brewhouse staple at Sunday brunch, the bar will move to the waterfront, with Miss Sarah on hand to guide visitors through garnishes, sauces and fresh embellishments.
Net monies after expenses will be used for grants to be given to Rauch Inc, the Isabel Jade Pickhardt Fund and NA1st. Our longtime friends at Rauch support people with disabilities through services designed to promote individual choices, growth and well being, while encouraging a community environment that acknowledges the value and contribution of all people. They’ll be helping NABC with the children’s area and site clean-up. The Isabel Jade Pickhardt Fund was set up to assist the daughter of the late Ryan Pickhardt, a local musician and keyboard player for the band Sativo Gumbo, with whom NABC has longstanding ties. NA1st is New Albany’s only grassroots independent business alliance, seeking to support and promote independent business owners and to educate community members about the importance of buying locally. On the 22nd, volunteers from NA1st will assist NABC in monitoring entrances and exits, and policing the grounds.
Children’s Area Activities
A duck pond, face painting, temporary tattoos, an art area and perhaps other activities will be available for the kids.
Feast BBQ (116 W Main St) is roasting a pig, and will be offering these items: Pork sliders with pickles and onions; pork tacos with cilantro, lime, cotija, and crema; and smoked corn on the cob ... Shawn, TJ and Charlestown Pizza Company will be preparing chicken salad croissants, Asian slaw, pasta salad, fruit cups and other fare ... NABC is brewing root beer for the event, and of course there’ll be water and soft drinks.
10:00 a.m.: (house music)
12 Noon: Roz Tate
1:00 p.m.: Ben Traughber
2:00 p.m.: Five Foot Fish
3:00 p.m.: Beeler Attic
4:00 p.m.: Jed and the NoiseMakers
5:00 p.m.: Porch Possums
6:00 p.m.: Dust Radio
7:00 p.m.: Whiskey Riders
8:00 p.m.: Toledo Bend
River City Winery will be on hand to sell wines and Sangria.
We hope you'll be able to stop by and help us remember what we remember.