As Tom Waits put it, “a little rain never hurt no one.”
Despite drizzly conditions, about 400 people crowded inside and outside Menotomy Beer and Wine in Arlington, MA for the store’s second annual Menot-Ö-Fest, an annual charity event to help the GENESIS Network.
The result was the raising of about $4200 for the construction of a new schoolhouse in Hok Pha Lae, Thailand.
“It’s just so nice to see people show up and donate to something that’s going to help people out,” said Menotomy employee Lucas Schleicher.
About twenty-eight area brewers, including Sam Adams, Long Trail, Mayflower, Shipyard, 50 Back, and others had tables set for the gathering, and a door payment of $3 bought customers a glass. Raffle prizes included a Jim Koch-signed Sam Adams Utopia bottle, and Meat House Arlington served BBQ plates of steak and chicken for $8.
Though some Fest-goers knew about GENESIS, others were finding out about the organization for the first time. Through the chatter and companionship over a good brew that defied the rain, it was apparent that everyone was having a good time.
“This is awesome. No one even cares that it’s raining,’ said Dave Rostosil.
“I think it’s great,” said Katie Chiasson.
The accumulated money will be a substantial help to GENESIS as it continues its project, with funds needed for supplies such as books as well as building materials. The opportunity to support a good cause while bringing brewers together is something that Menotomy owner Neil Duggan said will keep the Menot-Ö-Fest alive for years to come.
“We’re going to be doing this (as) our main beer fest forever,” he said.
Robert Moreau is Research Analyst/Outreach for the GENESIS Network. A 2008 Master’s graduate of the University of Massachusetts Lowell in Regional Economic and Social Development, Moreau has been working for GENESIS since July 2009. His work has included freelance newspaper pieces and a newsletter published for a Lowell-area social services agency in 2008.