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Local ladies join international movement

Matt DeYoung • Mar 8, 2017 at 7:23 PM

GRAND HAVEN TWP. — In honor of International Women’s Day, the women of the Grand Armory Brewing Co. didn’t take the day off work. 

Instead, they rolled up their sleeves and dove head first into a fun project, creating their own specialty beer at the company’s production facility in Grand Haven Township.  

One of those ladies, Shawn Bullock, noted that Wednesday was also International Women’s Brew Day

“We wanted to be a part of it,” she said. “Women at breweries from all over the world are brewing beer. We normally work in the tap room, but this day helps us get out of the tap room and in here for the day.

“I prefer the tap room,” she said with a laugh.

Bullock was joined in the brewing process by Kathryn Gleason and Stephanie Nash, along with Grand Armory’s brewmaster, James Goodburn. 

Goodburn said they first participated in International Women’s Brew Day last year. 

“Shawn spearheaded it, and we started it last year,” he said. “We asked them what they wanted to brew, and they landed on a blood-orange version of our Cropduster IPA. Blood-orange IPAs are spectacular, so we ordered all the fruit. ... Within two weeks, it was our No. 2 seller in our tap room.”

They named the beer Goddess Blood, and it remained a popular offering for months. 

“It was a huge success, so we started planning for this year around March 9 of last year,” Goodburn said. “We did change the recipe a little bit to make this beer its own.”

Goodburn said that the beer brewing industry has certainly been a boys’ club over the years, but he’s starting to see more and more female brewers across West Michigan. 

The trio of women at Grand Armory Brewing said they are grateful for the support their male coworkers gave them Wednesday. 

“If you couldn’t be a part of the ‘no women work day,’ you were supposed to wear red, so all the dudes wore red today,” Nash said. 

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