While enjoying last year’s Octoberfest Brewery Tour, I came across the book Badger Breweries, Past and Present. Definitely on the rare list, it’s a detailed account of all the breweries known to have existed in Wisconsin. Look at how many it shows for my small town alone.
According to the Wisconsin Historical Society, nearly every town in the 1800s had its own brewery. A town’s brewery was its heart, providing steady employment, commerce and togetherness. It was also its fingerprint, each with a unique history and terroir.
While most of these breweries have died long ago, we’re now savoring a renaissance with the craft beer movement. These new breweries—most of them small and independently owned—strengthen communities just like the old days. But like an egg in our beer, their innovative owners have been bestowing neighborhoods with food venues, tourism and charitable causes.
As interesting as beer history is, what I really want to talk about are small businesses. This week is National Small Business Week and in the same way those small, 19th century breweries were the lifeblood a community, so small, locally owned businesses are today.
According to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), more than half of Americans either own or work for a small business, and they create about two out of every three new jobs in the U.S. each year.
Maybe you want to become one of those owners! Maybe you want impress your fingerprint into the community. The SBA has great information online to get you started, everything from funding to launching your business.
And if you’re looking for help branding and marketing your new business, please keep me in mind!