Connect and Collect Through NABA

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  • 17 Dec 2019 6:37 PM | Danny Bora (Administrator)

    Flames tore through the former Jackson Brewery in OTR Sunday morning, sending smoke into the air, which could be seen and smelt miles away.

  • 11 Dec 2019 9:00 PM | Danny Bora (Administrator)

    NABA is excited to announce that the Brewmaster's Dinner at our 2020 Pittsburgh Convention will be hosted by Master Cicerone, Brian Reed! For those not familiar with the the Cicerone program, Master Cicerone is the highest level one can achieve. It is essentially a PHD in Beer! It's a very rigorous program. There are only 18 Master Cicerones in the world and only 2 in the Eastern US. Luckily for us, Brian is a Pittsburgher and is excited to be a part of our event. We're very fortunate to have him. The Brewmaster's Dinner will be held Wednesday, July 29th at 6PM and is an optional event. Cost for the dinner and beer pairing is a bargain at $45. An event like this with a Master Cicerone is generally going to run $75 and up. 

  • 10 Dec 2019 9:50 PM | Danny Bora (Administrator)

    John Ferguson, President

      Winter greetings to our NABA family! I have found that one of the best ways to stay warm during winter weekends is by staying indoors—especially at a Breweriana show. And there are plenty of them coming up—just look at the fine collection of shows listed on pages 58 & 59 of this magazine. Your NABA Board of Directors firmly believes that local shows are the lifeblood of this hobby. To be sure, there’s a lot of breweriana treasure that can be found in online auctions, especially those put on by Dan Morean and Glenn Miller, both NABA members and loyal sponsors of this magazine. These auctions supplement, but do not replace the camaraderie, information sharing, and interesting finds that turn up at breweriana shows.

    Local Support

      Even when I don’t find something at a show, I’m always glad I went. There are old acquaintances to renew and new ones to make, and even though I’ve been at this hobby for a long time, I invariably learn something new. Those are the things that are such an important part of this hobby. I’ve been fortunate enough to attend quite a few shows in recent months. These have included the Cleveland-area show in October led by NABA Membership Committee member Clayton Emery, which is known as the Eastern Great Lakes Brewery Collectables Show and sponsored by Michigan, Buckeye & Lake Erie chapters. In November I went to the Three Rivers chapter show in Ft. Wayne, IN.

      Also in November, NABA VP Ken Quaas and I hit the West Coast for NABA member Ken Harootunian’s terrific show near Oakland, the Western Regional Beer Can & Breweriana Show, sponsored by the 49er Chapter. Ken’s hospitality is unparalleled, and after the show he arranged an outstanding tour of San Francisco’s Anchor Brewery, which as beer fans know, started the American craft beer revolution.

    Chapter Growth

      What’s the common denominator among all of these shows? Local chapter support! At NABA, we have a renewed dedication to not only support and help strengthen our existing chapters, but also to add new ones and help them grow. Working together, we can grow the hobby and our memberships on both the local and national levels. In 2018, NABA had 23 chapters. As of this writing, we now have 39, an amazing increase of more than 60%. In this issue, we celebrate our partnership with four new chapters:

    Columbine of Colorado

    Richbrau of Virginia

    Schell’s Border Batch from No. Iowa & So. Minnesota

    Spearman of Florida

      Our 2020 goal is to double the 2018 total to 46 chapters. Board member and chapter liaison Darla Long and Board member/ Membership Committee chairman Mike Michalik have done a terrific job in both building chapter and individual memberships. Why should a local chapter partner with NABA? We can promote the chapter and its events in this magazine and on NABA’s website ( and our Facebook page. NABA also can send out email promotional messages to all our members in the local areas where the chapter events are being held.

    And if you have other ideas on ways that we can promote your chapter, please let me know!

      NABA is everywhere!

      Historically, NABA’s base was in the Midwest, and we certainly have strength in numbers there. But much of our growth in the past few years has come from the East Coast, West Coast, and Texas. Maybe you’ve seen NABA’s increased presence, featuring our stand-up banners with the famous “Handsome Waiter” character, borrowed from the historic Hampden Brewing Co. of Massachusetts. Thanks to our Board members and terrific Membership Committee, the Waiter has been highly visible, appearing at shows from coast-to-coast (see pg. 41 in this issue). Where you see the banner, you will find a NABA member with information about our organization and how to join. We chose the Waiter character purposely, because we believe that NABA is here to “serve” the local chapters and the overall hobby.

    Who’s the handsomest of them all? Posing with the Handsome Waiter, Nov. 2019 at Fallfest in Auburn, MA: from top left,Dave Reid, president of the Rusty Bunch chapter, NABA webmaster Dan Bora, NABA members Dave “Daev” Larazzolo and Jon Melillo, president of the Red Fox chapter,  

    Exciting Convention plans

      To help serve our East Coast growth, NABA’s Annual Convention has moved eastward to Pittsburgh this year and Chair Mike Michalik and Co-Chair Chris Watt have plans for what promises to be our biggest Convention ever, to be held on July 29-August 1, 2020. Please see the informational ad on page 15 of this issue for all the exciting details, with much more to come in the Spring issue of this magazine. There are some amazing things planned, from some spectacular home tours on Tuesday, to a Wednesday filled with a carefully curated bus tour of historic and current breweries, followed by a special Brewmaster’s Dinner. By popular demand, Thursday is being set aside for room to room trading, with seminars running only from 9AM-noon. Friday has our Annual Auction followed by a Pittsburgh craft beer tasting and then our meeting/banquet. A new feature on Friday evening will be a special Speakeasy event, with more details on that to come. Our concluding day is Saturday, which will feature a heavily promoted trade show, open free to the public, from 9AM to 1PM. Instead of the Saturday night dinner, we will have a full luncheon after the show and then the opportunity to attend a Pirates/Cardinals baseball game at the beautiful PNC Park, where we have our own special section reserved. The cost for the game will include tickets, transportation, food, soft drinks, and beer. For those who choose not to attend the ballgame, Saturday’s hospitality room will remain open, with food and drink, as normal. Please reserve your hotel rooms now! Many thanks to Iron City and the Pittsburgh Brewing Co. for signing on as our official beer sponsor and to the Penn Brewery for joining as a co-sponsor of the Convention. And many thanks to you, our members, who are helping your chapters, NABA, and our hobby, grow. I hope to see you while you are staying warm at many of the winter breweriana shows.




  • 06 Dec 2019 5:59 PM | Danny Bora (Administrator)

    When making NABA Convention plans, we advocate that you arrive early in Pittsburgh, because on Tuesday, July 28th, NABA is offering an extraordinary house tour itinerary. 

    Please note that registered members will need to be wearing their badges and to provide their own transportation for home admissions.  NABA will provide addresses and directions.

    First we'll tour the collection of James Mickinak.  Jim showcases the most amazing, extensive and preeminent Rolling Rock collection. In addition, Jim has a stellar Western Pennsylvania breweriana collection. Jim's collection is housed in a separate building behind his home and features a full sized 1930's era bar and backbar.  NABA guests will be treated to an open bar as Jim has hired a bartender for the day to serve us.  Jim has also graciously offered to serve a lunch of pizza, wings & cake.

    Next up is the spectacular collection of Chip Echnoz.  This is truly a massive and museum-caliber collection encompassing Western Pa, Eastern Ohio and West Virginia Breweriana.  Plans are to eventually house the collection at the renovated Pittsburgh Brewing Co. as a permanent museum that will be open to the public.

    Our third stop will feature the collection of Matt Welch. Matt’s terrific collection specializes in TOC's and ROG's and spans multiple geographies. If a piece is rare and minty, it's on his radar. Matt's walls are filled with great breweriana that also includes neon, signs clocks and chalks.

    Don’t miss your chance to personally view so many rare pieces of breweriana in one day than on Tuesday, July 28th. Be sure to make your plans now to join NABA this Summer in Pittsburgh!

  • 20 Nov 2019 4:43 PM | Danny Bora (Administrator)

    NABA is very happy to announce that Penn Brewery has come on board as a co-sponsor of our Convention this summer in Pittsburgh from July 29-Aug 1, 2020. Penn joins our lead sponsor, Pittsburgh Brewing / Iron City and will be not only a beer provider, but also a part of our Wednesday Bus Tour of historic and current Pittsburgh breweries.

  • 08 Nov 2019 9:17 PM | Danny Bora (Administrator)

    You can book your rooms now for our 2020 Convention in Pittsburgh. $100 per night, includes Breakfast Buffet for 2! Plan on staying through Saturday and attending the Pirates/Cardinals game at PNC Park.

    Click Here For Double Tree Reservations

  • 23 Oct 2019 10:10 PM | Danny Bora (Administrator)

    George Baley is still seeking ball knobs and help with pricing ball knobs for his latest, updated book on that topic. If you can help, we all would appreciate it, as this book will be a boon to the hobby. Just today he received a number of new submissions not seen in the previous edition. His deadline is Nov 3, so please reach out to him at:

  • 05 Oct 2019 1:38 PM | Danny Bora (Administrator)

    Greetings once again from Indianapolis! If summer brings breweriana conventions, then with fall arrives a host of great shows. Along with attending our annual Convention in Cincinnati, I made a pilgrimage to Albuquerque for the BCCA CANvention. Congratulations to Paula Fatura, the new BCCA president. I am now looking forward to some of the Midwest chapter shows to take in the fall foliage and raise a glass with many of my fellow NABA members.

    Regarding our own Convention…it was truly one for the ages in one of the most classic American beer towns, Cincinnati. We surpassed our record attendance in Madison last year and there were so many highlights – just read Tim Holian’s fine recap of the event in this issue.

    NABA Notes: • The Convention’s annual Friday night banquet was packed with great announcements, including records set by NABA. Through much personal effort and donated time, the board and membership committee volunteers have grown our club by an amazing +225 members in just two years – that’s more than 33%. Our count is 900+ members with a goal of 1000 by year-end 2020. We have also added 8 chapters nationwide over the past year, and want to welcome 3 additional chapters since my last letter: Simon Pure and 12 Horse chapters from western NY; and the Cornhuskers of NE. NABA recognizes that the local chapters are the lifeblood of our hobby and we are happy to support them in any way: We warmly welcome you all to the NABA fold.

    • Banquet guests heard of the official renaming of our coveted Founder’s Award after Herb Haydock and it was awarded to the very deserving John Stanley, our irreplaceable executive secretary. And our number two recipient of the Bob Kay Writer’s Award was, very appropriately, Larry Moter, who has authored two fine contributions to this issue.
    • At the Convention, new Board member Joe Gula from Indianapolis was formally elected to fill outgoing Board member Kent Newton’s seat.

    Kent, who was a longtime Board member and past vice-president, is a NABA treasure and will continue to chair the auction committee. Meanwhile, Don Roussin (MO), Barry Travis (MN), and Chris Watt (PA) were re-elected to two-year terms.
    • Our magazine’s quality speaks for itself and we are very thankful for the efforts of Lee Chichester, Ken Quaas, and all the volunteer member writers who bring this outstanding publication to you. A hearty welcome to first-time writer Greg Theberge, who shares his truly amazing collection of Narragansett breweriana in this issue.
    • Finally, our Convention T-shirts were a huge hit and sold out. Designed by Barry Travis and Beer Dave, we are producing a second batch by popular demand. Please email me at Fergkate@ or order online at soon as possible if you’d like to order one.

    A Debt of Gratitude: I want to sincerely thank Beer Dave Gausepohl for a spectacular job as Convention chair, and the team of Scott Bristol, Dave Reed, Tom Waller, and Carey Williams, who helped pull everything at the 2019 Cincy Convention together.

    2020: Pittsburgh is where NABA heads next for our annual gathering. Mike Michalik and Chris Watt have already done an amazing job putting together some very special activities for this event—you’ll be hearing much more as the year unfolds. Many thanks to Iron City and the Pittsburgh Brewing Co. for signing on as our official beer sponsor. Please make your reservations early—this one will be another record-breaker as our East Coast membership has soared!

    2021 is a special year for NABA, as it will be our 50th Anniversary. We are now forming an Anniversary Committee to help plan and organize this once-in-a-lifetime celebration, and we are exploring the Milwaukee area for the gathering. Please let me know if you are interested in helping— we’d love to have you. It is an exciting time to be a NABA member! Happy collecting,

    John Ferguson, President

  • 20 Aug 2019 6:22 PM | Danny Bora (Administrator)

    From Ken Quass

    NABA is proud to announce its partnership with Pittsburgh Brewing Co and its iconic flagship, Iron City Beer. PBC will be the official beer sponsor of NABA's 2020 Convention in Pittsburgh. Here is the ad they created to announce this great news. Congratulations to convention chair Michael Michalik and co-chair CM Watt for helping to orchestrate this terrific alliance.

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