Brewers from five West Michigan breweries have joined forces to create a beer and a band, and they’re going on tour to ring in Michigan Beer Month.

Catch them at various places around West Michigan from Wednesday, June 29-Sunday, July 3.

The event is called “Mashpaddle,” and it’s a celebration of West Michigan beer and collaboration.

Ten brewers—Steve Berthel, Jesse Jett, and Fred Bueltmann from New Holland Brewing; Melissa Brolick from Old Boy’s Brewhouse; Adam Engleman and Evan Keller from Lake Charlevoix Brewing; Tina Schuett from Rare Bird Brewpub; and Phil Thomson, Teo Watson-Ahlbrandt, and Dan Bouzis from Big Hart Brewing—teamed up to brew an IPA with all Michigan-grown ingredients.


Evan Keller, Dan Buozis, Teo Watson-Ahlbrandt, Phil Thomson, Fred Bueltmann, Steve Berthel, Adam Engleman

It includes a mix of caramel, vanilla, pale, and pilsner malts from Pilot Malt House, Motor City Malting, and Empire Malting. The brew’s cascade, centennial, chinook and crystal hops were grown in Empire, Michigan.

“It has lots of late hop additions to contribute to citrusy aromas,” said Bueltmann, New Holland Brewing’s Vice President of Brand and Lifestyle.

The culminating product is a bright, citrus-forward IPA that also bears the name Mashpaddle. It will be served at all participating locations.

A few members of the brew crew also happen to be musicians, so they’ve formed a band called Mashpaddle. The group includes three musicians from New Holland Brewing—Berthel on pedal steel, Jett on vocals, and Bueltmann on bass and sousaphone—as well as Lake Charlevoix’s Engleman on guitar.

“It’s really exciting to kind of combine passions,” Bueltmann said. “I think the idea that a group came together to make a beer and a band is really unique.”

The group will perform Jett’s original pieces along with a few “eclectic covers,” on a tour of participating breweries’ pub locations. They’ll perform between anchor sets with The Strapping Owls, a trio including Bueltmann as well as Larry Beers and Nicholas Barron. Attendees can expect “Americana roots and soul music,” Bueltmann said. In other words, good Fourth of July music.

“There’s a lot of enthusiasm for what we do and where we live,” Bueltmann said. “It’s a very feel-good event.”

See Mashpaddle and try the brew at one of the following dates and locations:



GRAND RAPIDS – Starting today, Grand Rapids residents and tourists alike will have the opportunity to win the title of “Brewsader” and a free T-shirt.

Experience Grand Rapids, a local destination marketing organization, has just launched the Beer City Passport program. Individuals who are at least 21 years of age can pick up a Beer City Passport booklet at any one of the 23 participating locations or the Grand Rapids GoSite, which is located in the Grand Rapids Art Museum.

To earn the title, a participant must visit eight different participating breweries and collect stamps in the Beer City Passport. Once that is achieved, participants bring the passport to the GoSite. A GoSite staff member checks the passport for eligibility, and the participant walks away with a Brewsader T-shirt and a much more cultured palate for craft beer.

The program is part of an effort to enhance beer tourism, which has proven its economic importance in Grand Rapids. Earlier this year, Experience Grand Rapids hired Grand Valley State University to do a study quantifying the impact beer tourism has had on the economy. The study found that beer tourists visit an average of 3.7 breweries during their stay, and they create an economic output of $12.23 million annually in Kent County.

Start collecting stamps at any one of the following breweries:

  • 57 Brew Pub & Bistro
  • B.O.B’s Brewery  
  • Brewery Vivant  
  • Cedar Springs Brewing Company  
  • Cellar Brewing Company  
  • Cranker’s Restaurant & Brewery  
  • E.B. Coffee & Pub  
  • Elk Brewing  
  • Founders Brewing Co.  
  • Grand Rapids Brewing Co.  
  • Gravel Bottom Craft Brewery
  • Harmony Brewing Company
  • Harmony Hall  
  • The Hideout Brewing Company  
  • HopCat  
  • Hudsonville Pike 51 Brewing Co.  
  • Jaden James Brewery  
  • The Mitten Brewing Company  
  • Osgood Brewing  
  • Perrin Brewing Company  
  • Railtown Brewing Co.
  • Rockford Brewing Company  
  • White Flame Brewing Co.

Learn more about the Brewsader program on the Experience Grand Rapids website.


Photo courtesy: Experience GR