Compiled by Bill Ridgely, BURP Archivist
Sep 2006 was an important date in BURP history – the 25th anniversary of the first gathering of homebrewers which became the BURP Club. That original gathering (in the form of a homebrew tasting and a crab feast) took place at the home of club founding father Dan McCoubrey in Wheaton, MD on Sun, Sep 27, 1981. After a name was chosen for the club (a longer story that will be reported elsewhere), it was decided to continue meeting on a monthly basis at the McCoubrey home.
Ten years later, on a bright, sunny Saturday in Sep 2006, the club celebrated its silver anniversary at beautiful Seneca Creek State Park in Gaithersburg, MD. In attendance were several of the original club members who subsequently had left the organization, including the 1st BURP president, Rick Gaskins from Frederick, MD, founding father Bob Frank (who subsequently opened one of the area’s 1st homebrew shops, The Flying Barrel in Frederick), Tom Rusnack (the club’s 1st Activities Chairman), former president (1989) Tom McGonigle, and Fred Dormer (co-winner of the club’s 1st homebrew competition). Original (and continuing) members Ralph Bucca & Chuck Popenoe were there and provided reminiscences of the early days of the club (along with John Sedlander, who was the club’s eldest member at the time and joined shortly after the founding). A lively panel discussion centering on the early days of the club was moderated by BURPer Steve Marler. After the anniversary festivities, members enjoyed a hearty crab feast in honor of the first gathering, some excellent libations (including BURP anniversary beers brewed for the 10th and 20th year celebrations) and a 25th anniversary cake especially baked for the occasion (and brought by Colleen Cannon). It was a fantastic day of camaraderie and celebration in honor of the club we’ve all grown to appreciate more and more as the years have gone by.
The Sep 2006 issue of BURP News was a cornucopia of fine writing, including a report on the epic 2006 MASHOUT held the previous month, a BURP “Tasty Travels” review of the beer scene in Pittsburgh, PA (courtesy of Bill Newman & Calvin Perilloux), a history of the club’s origins provided by your humble archivist, and Prof Charlie Pavitt’s excellent “Trivial Beer-Suits” column, this time on the subject of beer and religion in medieval times. On a sadder note, BURPer Teresa Marler contributed a very touching remembrance of BURPer Andrea Falk, who lost her very brave battle with cancer in July 2006.