Beer Buzz: CANvitational news, good reads and pumpkin ale


Glimmering up and down Georgia Street on Sept. 20, 40-plus craft breweries from across the USA and from ‘across the pond’ [UK] will be popping lids at Sun King’s 2nd annual CANvitational. It’s a gathering to connect brewers with us, craft beer fans learning the virtues of canning—as in green, clean and stalwart (yes, big craft beers are as good poured from aluminum cans as from glass bottles or from taps). Colorado-based Oskar Blues boosted metal’s craft mettle nationally in Nov. 2002. Sun King led Indiana in 2010 showcasing Shane Brown’s symbol-laden, intricate artwork. Great Crescent followed in 2011 with Joe Valas’ red-gold moon aglow on a black background. GCB earned distinction as the first to can Bourbon barrel-aged beer. Along with SK and GCB you’ll find People’s, Tin Man and Upland at CANvitational 2014. Seek out the other dozen-plus Hoosier canners wherever their products appear on shelves and menus. 

Check out this incredible video from to learn more about the event:

Sun King’s partnership with the Arts Council of Indianapolis this year features works created with craft beer cans, on view at the Indianapolis ArtsGarden during regular Mall hours from the exhibit’s Sept. 18 installation until the 29th. An artist reception Sept. 19 from 7-9 p.m. requires a ticket, which can be purchased on

Russ Phillips, in his newly published, Canned: Artwork of the Modern American Beer Can, presents his blog between hard covers. Phillips reminds us, “The beercan became an iconic part of American history almost as soon as the first cans were sold in Richmond, Virginia, back on January 24, 1935.” Between then and 2002 craft and can did not universally connect. Cans became associated with megabrew, and only a few craft brewers trespassed with canning during the 1980s, the number growing during the 1990s, and then exploding in the 21st century as green gained momentum. Fort Wayne-based Warbird was a bit ahead of the curve in 2004. They closed in 2009, but their fine Red Ale can is pictured on page 86 through a Two Brothers connection. It took Sun King’s savvy to engage Hoosiers. You’ll find Sun King on pages 61, 82-85,161. Great Crescent appears on pages71-72. “Canned” delivers 200 pages of pertinent descriptions about the art and the brew along with superb photos of cans representing 221 nationwide breweries. Word is out a second edition with more Indiana mentions is in the works, along with an appearance by Phillips at CANvitational 2015.

New Seasonal Brews:

Bier Pumpkin Ale release party Sept. 19, 3-10 p.m;

Tap takeovers: Sept. 9, Ruth’s Chris 86th St., 6 p.m.; Sept. 11, City Mom’s, 6-9 p.m.; Sept. 15, Tavern on South 4 p.m.; Sept. 18, Dorman Street Saloon 6 p.m.


Sept. 13: ORANJE at Indiana State Fairgrounds adds craft beer to the interactive experience. More at

Sept. 16: 16th Annual Mad Anthony’s Oktobeerfest, Headwaters Park West, Fort Wayne, 2-6 p.m.


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