I hope you all are staying well during these challenging pandemic times! The summer months have sadly, but understandably, only produced a few shows to attend, and I know we all are missing the good times and camaraderie that come with seeing each other and sharing stories at our “beer show” gatherings.
I attended a show hosted by NABA member Jon Newberry at his Wiedemann Brewery in St. Bernard/ Cincinnati, OH. This event, largely arranged by NABA’s Queen City and Miami Valley Chapters, was well attended. And yes, masks and social distancing were recognizable. I know we all yearn for a return to some semblance of normalcy, and hope it happens soon.
NABA Survey Success: Now, how about some good news? It’s easy to say that the best news about NABA is the active and generous participation of you, our terrific members, in this club! In June, we asked our membership to complete an emailed survey about the convention as well as what they think is working and what should be changed about the club.
What’s clearly working is membership interest in NABA, because an astonishing 45% – 433 members – answered the survey. Your opinions were both clear-cut and instrumental in guiding your NABA Board on our decision to cancel the Convention. We also got some terrific feedback on what you value most about NABA and things we can change for the better. Please see page 8 for complete reporting on the survey. Your responses and suggestions are invaluable toward guiding the Board in setting priorities and developing strategies going forward.
NABA 2021 Convention: The 2021 Convention marks our 50th, and we will be celebrating in the city where it all began: Milwaukee. Our meeting will be at the recently-renovated Ingleside Hotel in Waukesha, which has an ideal set-up and where we successfully held two prior conventions in 1996 and 2004. And yes, we will have all the rooms together to encourage the kind of room-to-room trading we all love.
This 50th Convention is truly an event you won’t want to miss, so mark your calendars now for July 28th-31st. Chairman Joe Gula and Co-chair Mike Michalik are already making great plans for this gala celebration. We all hope the Covid situation is in the rear view mirror by then.
NABA appointments: Those who regularly attend our conventions know that Board of Director elections are part of the agenda. Since Pittsburgh was cancelled, elections were not formally held. The good news is that we have retained all our valuable Board of Director members for the next year.
You’ll also see on our masthead in this issue that George Baley, by unanimous vote of the NABA Board, was elected both Director Emeritus and our first Club Historian. A past president and editor of this magazine, George has done it all for NABA and was awarded our highest honor, the Herbert A. Haydock Founder’s Award, in 2014. His new appointments are additional well-deserved honors, which recognize his continued contributions to NABA.
Tom Curran, who splits his time between Wisconsin and Arizona, also accepted the Board’s invitation to join our stellar Membership Committee. Tom is a long-time NABA member and valued contributor to NABA, including as a writer for this magazine.
Norm Jay: Time marches on and inevitably, we lose members who pass on. We try to memorialize them in our “Taps” section of this magazine, which in this issue, sadly includes four members, including Norm Jay. A past president of NABA and Director Emeritus, Norm did so much to help build this organization over the years and his good cheer will be missed by the many NABA members who called Norm a friend.
This Magazine: The NABA Board voted unanimously to give back to our membership by spending the extra money to create this special 80-page issue to kick-off our 50-year celebration. It was only in the Spring of 2019 that we expanded from 48 to 64 pages, and 80 pages was not even imagined.
And what’s most amazing is that we could have made this issue even bigger. Why? Because of the overwhelming interest from and willingness of you, our NABA members, to contribute to our magazine. More than 100 members were involved in creating this issue and the interest and enthusiasm for this publication continues to grow. We are sincerely grateful for the time and effort of so many of you who are willing to participate in making this magazine one for all to enjoy!
Editor Lee Chichester and Editorial Director, Ken Quaas, have built a great team of writers and have established a new Editorial Board, consisting of Dave Alsgaard, Joel Gandt, and Mike Paul. This group will continue to help in the overall assembly and editing of the magazine, as we move to constantly improve and bring you the great stories of our hobby.
In closing, let me say that I hope you stay safe and in good health, but I hope also to see you at a show sometime soon. In the meantime, sit back, relax, and enjoy this magazine!
John Ferguson, President - Fergkate@comcast.net