Hangar 24 to throw itself a first birthday bash



Helicopter rides, live music, brewery tours and, of course, beer to highlight day


From a start-up local business to a well-recognized member of the community in just a year, Hangar 24 Brewery has plenty to celebrate. On May 30, Hangar 24 will be throwing itself a first birthday party at its brewery location across the street from the Redlands Airport.

            The all-day festivities, which will run from noon to 8 p.m., will feature helicopter rides from High Performance Helicopters, live music and guided brewery tours that will showcase Hangar 24’s expanded operations. Not only are two new floor-to-ceiling brewing tanks the centerpiece of the brewery, but the bottling operation on the south side of the building is now in full swing.

            One highlight of the day will be the release of a new beer that will include a local product. The identity of that new beer is being kept under wraps until the anniversary celebration. The mystery addition, available for an extremely limited time, will join the products already in production: Orange Wheat, Pale Ale, Alt-Bier, Helles Lager and IPA.

            Opened by brewmaster and owner Ben Cook, along with his wife Jessica, last spring, the brewery has been a success in a tough economic climate. Jessica Cook has handled the majority of the anniversary celebration planning.

Where Hangar 24 beer was originally in a handful of area restaurant/bar settings that were willing to take a chance on a new locally produced product, in just a year it is the rare handful of those establishments that aren’t carrying Hangar 24.

            “Our marketing and advertising has been a grassroots effort,” Ben Cook said. “We’ve been growing because people have been telling each other about what we’re doing. Without that, we would not be where we are today.”

            The anniversary celebration is not only open to the public, but admission is free. Children are welcome, accompanied by an adult. Food will be provided by Johnny’s Tacos and Sports. Singer/songwriter Kelly McGuire will perform, as well as the Buffalo Blues Band.