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Beer Here! New exhibit showcasing Colorado's hoppy history opens Saturday

The new exhibit at History Colorado Center explores the brewing lifestyles and hoppy history of Colorado.

DENVER, Colorado — Beer has long been ingrained in Colorado's history, and now there's an exhibit showcasing the journey the malt liquor has taken in our state.

The Beer Here! Brewing the New West exhibit at History Colorado Center opens Saturday, May 18. 

The exhibit explores numerous historical events that beer has been a part of, from the Gold Rush, immigration and early onset of prohibition, to the growth of the outdoor industry and contemporary customs.

Credit: KUSA
Beer Here! Brewing the New West exhibit at History of Colorado Center opens May 18.

“Beer is a great way to understand the social and economic changes that have swept through Colorado in the last 160 years,” said Jason Hanson, History Colorado’s chief creative officer and director of interpretation & research. “Some of the country’s most storied and innovative breweries are headquartered in Colorado, and we’ve always been leaders in brewing and beverage packaging innovation, including inventing the aluminum can. 

Today, good beer pairs nicely with the Colorado lifestyle, building a more authentic connection to community, invention, environmental stewardship and recreation here.” 

The exhibit comes after five years of research, as well as meeting with local organizations and breweries working with the Colorado Brewers Guild.

There are more than 400 breweries located in Colorado. The state also houses the headquarters for the Brewers Association and the Brewers Guild and the American Homebrewers Association. 

Credit: KUSA
Beer Here! Brewing the New West exhibit at History of Colorado Center opens May 18.

Colorado also hosts the Great American Beer Festival and is the fifth-biggest craft-beer consuming state per capita, according to the History of Colorado Center.  

Beer Here! will include authentic artifacts from Colorado's beer and brewing history, spanning over numerous time periods. The exhibit will feature a number of fascinating objects, from beer-brewing equipment from then to now, to Adolph Coors’ original hand-drawn sketch of his first beer label.

The exhibit will expand over five sections and visitors will be able to see and smell the ingredients Coors uses to make its beer, inside the exhibit and outside in the “beer ingredient garden.” 

Credit: KUSA
Beer Here! Brewing the New West exhibit at History of Colorado Center opens May 18.

Beer will not be allowed in the gallery. The museum’s café will offer a flight of four beers that represent different time periods. Tasting notes and additional historical information about the beers will come with the flight.

“Over a can of beer, we can take a peek into several important moments in Colorado’s past. ... Looking at the past through a pint can help us understand how this wonderful place called Colorado came to be,” said Sam Bock, lead developer for Beer Here! and public historian for History Colorado. 

Ball Corporation and Coors Brewing Company are sponsoring the exhibit which will remain open at History Colorado Center through August 2020. 

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