Baseball bats are symbolic to American culture – provoking nostalgic thought to the pastime of the game. Now they are being used as an ingredient in a new brew set to release on Memorial Day.
It’s not the ambrosia of the Gods, but it does pay homage to the troops in celebration of Memorial Day – when the beer will be released and the proceeds will be donated to Operation Homefront.
Operation Homefront is a nonprofit organization, established in 2002, which provides assistance for US military troops, the families they leave behind, and wounded warriors when they return home.
Operation Homefront, based out of San Antonio, Texas, was developed to support the families of deployed service members immediately following 9/11. The organization raises funds to provide emergency, financial, and morale assistance to families while troops are participating in a tour of duty.
Nine different craft breweries from around the country – including Fremont Brewing, Sly Fox Brewing, and Cigar City Brewing – collaborated to create Homefront IPA. They will toast the troops with a beer aged with baseball bats – unfinished maple Louisville Sluggers, as varnished wood would be toxic – and orange peels. The bats are added towards the end of the fermentation process. After the beer is brewed, the bats will be dried and auctioned off.
Homefront IPA is a collaborative beer that was initially developed in 2011 in order to raise money and awareness for Operation Homefront, as part of a project now dubbed “Hops for Heroes.” Sponsors within the craft brewing industry provide ingredients and supplies to help brewers keep their costs down and increase the amount of money raised for the cause. Last year, the project raised $165,000.
Memorial Day, formerly known as Decoration Day, originated after the American Civil War to commemorate the Union and Confederate soldiers who died, and is a US federal holiday which occurs every year on the final Monday of May. It typically marks the start of the summer vacation season, while Labor Day marks its end.
The event was meant to remember the men and women who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces, not to be confused with Veterans Day – a day honoring those who died while in service of all US military veterans, living and deceased. But by the 20th century, Memorial Day was extended to honor all Americans who have died while in military service.
This weekend and Monday, please remember the people who defend your freedom.
[Image Hops for Heroes Facebook]