Sun King Community Partner Spotlight: Indiana State Museum "Rise and Fall of Prohibition"

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition is coming to the Indiana State Museum in Indianapolis. From September 19th, 2014 through February 15, 2015, come learn about America’s biggest Constitutional hiccup.

On January 20, 1920, a new day dawned. As the 19th amendment went into effect, Americans could no longer manufacture, sell or transport intoxicating beverages. Prohibition was now part of the Constitution, holding the same status as freedom of speech, freedom of religion and the abolition of slavery.

The politics behind the 18th amendment were much more complicated than a simple desire for the nation to be “wet” or “dry”. Women’s suffrage, immigration, taxes and more were all driving forces behind those arguing for and against Prohibition. American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition explores all of these factors, and also examines the ways in which Prohibition both succeeded and failed to meet its goals.

Indiana wasn’t exempt from the turmoil of forbidden alcohol. Rumrunners from Chicago and Kentucky – both hotbeds of illegal alcohol production – traversed the state. Well-known organized crime figures, including Al Capone and “Diamond” Jim Brady were particularly fond of staying in the grand hotels in the southern part of the state, including French Lick and West Baden. Of course, not everyone was trying to skirt Prohibition. The Reverend Billy Sunday was preaching to millions of teetotalers across America from his home base in Winona Lake, Indiana, entertaining listeners with fiery sermons about the “demon alcohol.”

More than anything, Prohibition was divisive, and it ignited passionate responses across the country and in the Hoosier heartland as well. Explore all of these issues, choose sides between the “wets” and the “drys,” and more at American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition. For more information, visit

To celebrate the opening of the exhibition, the Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites will host Indiana Spirits on Oct. 3 at the Indiana State Museum. Don’t miss this evening of food, drinks, entertainment, unique photo ops and so much more. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit and enter the code: KNOCKKNOCK.

A Toast to the Humble Can: CANvitational Preview

Monday, September 08, 2014

Twelve years ago, I lived in Bucktown on Chicago’s northwest side, and one day I noticed a new bar had popped up along my commute on Damen Avenue with a simple name: Cans.

I thought to myself, “Why would anyone want to go to place that serves beer in cans?!?” Consequently, I never set foot in the place.

Though Cans was probably conceived as a trip down memory lane for fraternity brothers to put back a few of their favorites from the bottom shelf, more and more of today’s craft brewers are turning to cans to package their beer.

While the Gottfried Krueger Brewing Company delivered the first canned beer to its faithful following in 1935 (History Channel has the full story), it used to be that canned beer was only for the big boys of fermentation and synonymous with the cheap stuff. Certain canned beers are also popular with the hipster crowd.

But in 2002, Oskar Blues Brewery founder and owner Dale Katechis decided to package his craft beer in cans and launched a revolution.

SKB was pretty early to this revolution and in 2009 became the 53rd American Craft Brewery.  Today, there are more than 500 brewers who can. 

As my friend and SKB co-founder Clay Robinson is fond of saying, cans are a “superior vessel” for packaging craft beer. The reasons are plentiful. You can take it more places, it chills faster, and it blocks out beer’s two enemies: light and air, which in turn, maintains freshness and enhances quality.

On top of that, it’s a greener product as aluminum is infinitely recyclable and weighs less than glass. Since it lighter, less energy is necessary to get the product from the brewery to your local retailer. Another bonus for the can is more room for art and storytelling. Last and certainly not least, technological enhancements in the can liners have eliminated concerns of metallic taste.

The point of all this is the humble can deserves a celebration and some love. So what better way to honor craft canned beer than by inviting a bunch of great breweries that can to Indianapolis for the Second Annual Sun King CANvitational!

The CANvitational is the biggest celebration of canned beer this side of the Mississippi and throws down an exclamation point on Indiana’s growing list of breweries – currently at 92. While we’re bragging, slotted Indiana at 18th in a recent ranking of each state by its beer.

Need more reasons to join us on Georgia Street and Pan Am Plaza on September 20 for the CANvitational? How about the chance to sample the newest CANlaboration between SKB and Solemn Oath Brewery in Naperville, Ill. Solemn Oath and Sun King will produce 30 Minute Coma, a Belgian Session IPA (yes, yes and yes). And just like last year’s scrumptious Royal Brat CANlaboration by SKB and Three Floyds, this is a brew that’ll only come around once – miss out at your own risk!

With 40+ breweries from around the country and two from the UK, you’ll also get the opportunity to taste a ton of beers that you simply can’t find in Central Indiana or even the Midwest.

And just like the famous month of May in Indianapolis, Septembers in Indy usually feature excellent weather. Let’s hope for a picturesque day downtown just like last year.

My advice: Don’t miss this unique celebration and make a weekend out of it. If you’re not from the area (or even if you are), check out some of Indy’s downtown restaurants, ride the Pacers Bikeshare around the highly acclaimed Indianapolis Cultural Trail and stay at one of Indy’s downtown hotels.

There’s still time to get your tickets for the CANvitational at a discount of $10 before the day of the event (if they last, that is).

One more thing, tell us which brewery from this list that you are most excited to taste and why in the comments section and we’ll select one commenter to win two tickets to the big event.

Ryan Puckett is principal of two21 LLC, a communication firm focused on sustainability. Sometimes people confuse him for the bartender at The Libertine. Contact Ryan at or on Twitter @rmpuckett.  

How Did I Get Here: Jacob Goodnight

Thursday, September 04, 2014

Meet Jacob Goodnight, Sun King Assistant Brewer, animal lover, and SKB Crew "Goldilocks".

Name: Jacob Goodnight

Nickname: Havuh…”as in have a good night”

Job Title/Duties: Assistant Brewer

How did you get here?

Jacob arrived at Sun King after three years in the retail industry. He obtained his degree from IU in apparel merchandising and soon after took a retail position in Martinsville. Two years post-graduation, Jacob found himself in a position he did not enjoy, manager at a Goodwill store. At the urging of his “old lady”, Jake decided to pursue his passion for beer and applied for a job at SKB. He quickly worked his way up the brewery latter to his current position of Assistant Brewer.

Toughest thing about being a brewer?

“The schedule”

Every Monday thru Friday the brewers at SKB work around the clock to brew a morning, mid, and late night batch of Fresh•Local•Beer.

Where are you from?

Jacob is from Pittsboro, Indiana, the town obscurely known for catfish and Jeff Gordon. Jacob did make sure to clarify that he does not personally care about Jeff Gordon and that the famous catfish restaurant of Frank and Mary’s was recently converted into a Dollar General.

What might someone be surprised to know about you?

Up until about a year ago, Jacob owned a 22 lb. pet skunk named Sprout. Whom he described as “like a needy cat”.

Favorite thing about working at SKB?

Jacob’s favorite thing about working at Sun King is being surrounded by unique and friendly people.

How do you keep your hair in such pristine condition?

Jacob is known for having some of the best man-hair around the brewery which he attributes to his diligent washing schedule and heavy conditioning. Jacob washes his hair every 2-3 days and is adamant about taking it easy on the shampoo. Recently, Jacob experimented with a “no-poo” approach, a strategy he did not recommend.

Hobbies outside of work?

Jacob spends much of his time outside of the brewery caring for all of his pets. He also enjoys sleeping.

Sun King Community Partner Spotlight: About Special Kids

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

About Special Kids (ASK) is Indiana’s Parent to Parent organization that works throughout the state to give support, answer questions and provide information and resources to families of children with special needs. ASK staff are extensively and continually trained as well as parents of children with special needs; therefore, we can empathetically help other families and professionals understand the various systems that families encounter related to special needs.  ASK has a parent liaison in each region of the state with our central office location in Indianapolis.

ASK’s mission: Helping children with special needs live better lives by educating, empowering and connecting their families.

We define children with special needs as children with:

• Physical, mental, emotional disabilities
• Developmental delays
• Chronic or terminal illnesses
• Mental health concerns
• Behavioral disorders
• Learning disabilities and educational delays
  • • Children who have risk factors or who are showing signs of a suspected disability

As a parent, once you make contact with ASK you will be connected with a parent liaison.  Parent liaisons focus on teaching families how to anticipate child and family needs, identify appropriate resources, and access community systems to help them meet the needs of their children.  Additionally, ASK’s parent liaisons follow up with each family that contacts us. So...even if there is something that you forget to address during that first call you make, you will have plenty of contact with your liaison to answer your questions and anticipate future needs.  Follow-up calls are scheduled to cover information for families on pertinent topics such as special education, health care financing, respite, childcare and the medical home.


ASK was incorporated as the Indiana Parent Information Network in 1987 by two parents and two professionals who represented the perspectives of a family of a child with developmental disability, a family of a child with serious chronic illness, a professional in medical social services, and a professional in special education.

•  In 2013, ASK served a family in every county in the state helping more than 3,200 new families. ASK has served approximately 45,000 families and professionals since 1987. We make a difference in Indiana by:

  • • Connecting families who have children with a certain disability or chronic health condition to appropriate support groups.
  • • Educating families on various public health insurance options available.
  • • Training families on the rules & regulations of Indiana’s special education law.
  • • Finding childcare options for kids with special needs.

Another very important aspect of the education project is that ASK also provides information and trainings for professionals who work with children with special needs and their families.  ASK has tailored a workshop called “What Every Parent Wants You to Know” which provides the professional a unique insight into the daily lives, routines, stresses and history of a family of a child with special needs.  The goal is to let the professional understand the family’s perspectives and to use this insight to help address accommodations the child will need to be as successful as possible in a variety of settings.

ASK provides intensive services to families of children with special needs in conjunction with medical and behavioral case management received from these organizations. The range of services ASK provides families includes guidance on how to access essential community resources, 1 on 1 training regarding health care financing and education options, and parent to parent support. ASK also educates the care coordination personnel about community resources, education, health care financing options and disability issues.

For more information:

Sun King Community Partner Spotlight: Down Syndrome Indiana

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Down Syndrome Indiana is a not-for-profit, 501(c)3, non-member organization serving the needs of individuals with Down syndrome along with their families, caregivers, teachers and employers. We are supported by a dedicated Board of Directors, a full time Executive Director, three additional staff persons, and numerous volunteers. Down Syndrome Indiana offers a wide variety of resources for families, medical professionals, and educators. We work to be a first response when there is a diagnosis of Down syndrome – whether prenatal or postnatal – with our New Parent Packet. This packet includes resources for support, medical information, as well as stories of fellow Indiana families with children with Down syndrome. Our efforts work to support families and build awareness and advocacy in our society. Down Syndrome Indiana continues supporting families through coordinated community groups to connect families all over Indiana. Many adults with Down syndrome volunteer as interns in our office to learn real world skills that they can carry on to meaningful employment. We host several events throughout the year such as our Holiday party, our Family Picnic, our annual Buddy Walk, and more! Some of our events are fund-raising activities that support not only Down Syndrome Indiana but also national research efforts through the National Down Syndrome Society. The programs and services of the organization are supported totally by individual and corporate donations, grants and special events.

Down Syndrome Indiana is dedicated to enhancing the lives of individuals from infancy through adulthood. We were the first Down syndrome advocacy organization in Indiana when we opened, nearly 17 years ago! We’ve helped pave the way for groups like Best Buddies, Gigi’s playhouse and more! In 2014, we’ve reached over 600 families in Indiana with a child or children with Down syndrome. We’ve helped host the National Down Syndrome Congress Convention with the help of over 450 volunteers – without whom we couldn’t have done it! At Down Syndrome Indiana, we are so blessed to be supported by the Indy community so we can continue to build the Down syndrome community here in Indiana. 

For more information please visit:

How Did I Get Here: Errol Katz

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Have you ever taken a look at our Sun King Crew page and thought, I wonder how that guy/gal started working at SKB. Here's your chance to meet Errol, one of Sun King's Draft Techs.

How Did I Get Here: Errol Katz

Name: Errol Katz

Nickname: Errol Katz

Job Title/Duties: Draft Tech

How did you get here?

Errol arrived at Sun King like many other SKB employees, by bugging management enough to get a job. Prior to Sun King, Errol spent time in school studying audio engineering and pursuing his passion for music. After school, Errol launched a successful screen printing business which he owned and operated for 11 years. Looking for a career change, Errol found himself pursuing a job in the beer industry before he finally landed at SKB.


Errol grew up in Richmond, Indiana

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?


What is your favorite thing about working at SKB?

“Making Chris Hansen happy everyday”

What might someone be surprised to know about you?

“I don’t like surprises”

What do you like to do outside of work?

Errol still plays in a handful of bands around town and is somewhat of a local guitar legend. He plays mostly metal music but mentioned he maintains a wide variety of musical tastes and styles. If you are lucky, you may catch Errol laying down some tunes at your local pub.

Who are some of your favorite bands?

Errol had a little bit of trouble coming up with a list of favorite bands so the question was rephrased to read “what bands have you listened to today?” Thus, on Thursday, June 26th 2014 Errol listened to a combination of The Dead Kennedy’s, Outkast, and Black Flag.

Bonus fact!  Last summer, Errol saved a sweet kitten from being hit by traffic on College Ave and 16th Street.  He brought the kitten to the brewery and the kitten was adopted by one of Sun King's former employees.  Errol will always be our hero!

How Did I Get Here: Gretchen Ferringer

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Have you ever wondered into the Tasting Room at Sun King and wondered how SKB's Tasting Room Manager got her job at the brewery? Meet Gretchen aka Mama G!

How Did I Get Here: Gretchen Ferringer

Name: Gretchen Ferringer

Nickname: Mama G

Job Title/Duties: Tasting Room Manager

How did you get here?

Gretchen was a nurse for 14 years in her past life. One day she decided she needed a change and quit her job to start a new life venture. She quickly landed on her feet working at a friend’s Sushi restaurant. From there, Gretchen was introduced to Sun King founder, Clay Robinson, and the rest is history.

Where did you grow up?

Gretchen was born and raised in the South West Indiana town of Velpen. She then went on to Indiana University, to then obtain her degree from Vincennes University before settling in Indianapolis. Gretchen is married and has a 7 year old daughter.

What is your favorite thing about working for SKB?

Gretchen’s favorite thing about working for Sun King is the family mentality that all of the employees have. She loves working in an environment in which people are accepted for being themselves.

What is something someone may be surprised to know about you?

Gretchen is a huge fan of heavy metal music. Her favorite band is Korn whom she has seen in concert 6 times. Although one might not expect it, Gretchen says she is no stranger to a good mosh pit.

What do you like to do outside of work?

Gretchen likes to garden, paint and read in her free time. She has recently read biographies from Slash, Ozzy Osborne and Anthony Kiedis of the Red Hot Chili Peppers and explained Kiedis was by far the craziest rocker of the three.

What is your favorite food?

“I just like food”

Gretchen did mention however that if she had to eat one food for every meal it would be sushi. Gretchen has managed to turn her 7 year old daughter into a sushi lover as well.

Cooking with Sun King: Grilled Corn Salsa with GFJ

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Chef D has been busy with the grill, just in time for summer time grilling, and the holiday weekend. 

This Cooking with Sun King recipe, Grilled Corn Salsa, is made with our most anticipated seasonal beer Grapefruit Jungle.

Stay tuned for our next Cooking with Sun King Contest.  Where you get to be the chef and win prizes!

Grilled Corn Salsa with GFJ

2 red bell peppers diced

2 green bell peppers diced

1 jalapeño seeded and diced

1 pint grape tomatoes diced

2 medium red onions diced

4-6 radishes diced, soaked in ice water for 5-10 minutes

4 garlic cloves finely chopped

zest of 1 lime

juice of 4 limes

zest & juice of 1 grapefruit

1 bunch of cilantro, discard stems & roughly chop the leaves

4 ears of corn grilled

2 15 ounce cans of black beans, rinsed and drained

¼ cup of GFJ

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

salt & pepper to taste

Grill the corn over medium high heat, in the husk, for 5-8 minutes.  Remove from grill, cool & cut kernels from the cob.

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl.  Toss to combine.  Allow flavors to meld for an hour.  Serve with chips or on top of a grilled pork chop. 

For more grilled flavor, try grilling the jalapeno & red onion.  Half the limes & grapefruit then grill for 3- 5 minutes, to really bring out the smoky flavors.  

Important Information for Sun King's 5th Anniversary Party

Friday, June 27, 2014

Important information for Sun King's 5th Anniversary Party

The Sun King Crew is excited to celebrate our 5th Anniversary with all of you this Saturday, June 28th, 2014 at Sun King Brewery.

This email contains important information about the SOLD OUT SKB 5 Party with The Wild Feathers (8pm)*, Scott H. Biram (6:30pm), the Shelby County Sinners (5pm), along with DJ Helicon (4pm).

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• Event Stuff - Our anniversary party will be located outdoors in our south parking lot.  The event is rain or shine.  Please plan accordingly.  Lawn chairs are permitted.  Please be considerate when setting up your chairs.  No outside beverages of any kind are allowed into the venue.  All patrons must be 21+ with a valid ID.  Please remember to bring your ideas!  *Band Lineup times are subject to change.

• Tasty Brew News - This is the official tapping party for Grapefruit Jungle.  Pints and cans will be available for purchase during the event.  NO CARRY OUT SALES WILL BE ALLOWED.  We will also be serving on draft Mello Johnny (Anniversary Brew) • Laverne • Shirley • Popcorn Pilsner and Sunlight Cream Ale • Wee Mac • Osiris (cans).  All beers are $5 a pint • you must purchase tickets at one of our ticket stations.  Ticket stations are cash and credit!
• Take an UBER - Sun King has partnered with UBER to insure that you have a safe ride to and from the event.  First time users can download the app for free via their smartphones, then use the promo code SUNKING5, for $25 towards their ride.  There will be a designated UBER pickup/drop off spot located in SKB's Parking Lot.  Already an UBER user?  We encourage you to utilize UBER due to limited parking.
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• Don't get Hangry! - There will be several of your favorite Indy food vendors onsite including: Just Pop In! • Duos Indy • Scratchtruck • Little Eataly • Mac Genie • Spice Box • Circle City Spuds.  Food trucks will also be selling H2O so that you can stay hydrated.  

• Event Parking - Feel like pedaling your bicycle to SKB 5 - we've got you covered!  There will be several bike racks to park your bikes.  Friendly reminder to bring a lock, the racks will be unattended.  Driving from out of town?  Here's a map of close places to park.  No charge lots are first come, first served.


• SKB Tasting Room - The Sun King Tasting Room will have special hours on Saturday due to our anniversary party.  We will be using the majority of the Sun King parking lot as the event venue space.  Open Tasting Room hours will be 12 pm - 3 pm.  No public tours will be scheduled and we will not be allowing brewery bus tours to visit due to extremely limited parking.  You will be able to purchase growler fills, cans, merch and kegs, and will be allowed to do sampling as well, you will not be able to bring your purchases into the event.  Please plan accordingly.  The Tasting Room will close promptly at 3pm.  There will be no loitering in the Tasting Room nor in the Sun King parking lot.  

NO Grapefruit Jungle will be available for purchase in the Tasting Room.  It will be released Monday, June 30th at Sun King and will be distributed to local bars, restaurants, and liquor stores.  

We would like to take a moment to thank our partners, MOKB, Do317, WTTS, Yelp, UBER, Just Pop In, as well as our friends, families, and other great community partners for your support over the past five years!  Cheers to many more years of Fresh•Local•Beer.

Sun King Community Partner Spotlight: Indy Mega Adoption Event

Monday, June 23, 2014

Indianapolis has demonstrated it is a first class city in several ways, and we now have an opportunity to add animal welfare to that list.  The plan is ambitious… increase the number of live releases of animals from Indianapolis area animal shelters to 90%.

The Indy Mega Adoption Event is a 2-day event designed to adopt out as many dogs and cats as possible from shelter and rescue organizations in the greater Indianapolis area. Participating groups will bring over 750 adoptable dog and cats to the Indiana State Fairgrounds south pavilion for this unprecedented event.

All pets will be vaccinated, spayed or neutered, micro-chipped and will go home with their new families the same day they are adopted.

Adoption fee for any cat or dog is $30.  Entrance to the event is free! Parking is $5 per vehicle.

Dates: Saturday and Sunday, June 28 -29, 10:00am to 8:00pm both days.  

The event is sponsored by the Nina Mason Pulliam Charitable Trust, along with Petsmart, Petsmart Charities and Banfield.

Why do we need a “Mega Adoption Event”?

Over 16,000 cats and dogs end up in Indianapolis shelters every year with around 8,000 being euthanized. The sad truth is that these 8,000 pets are healthy and adoptable. The method of “mega adoptions” is a proven technique that has great success in other cities across the country where shelter euthanasia rates have reduced dramatically in just a few short years.

We want to achieve this same outcome for our city’s deserving pets who through no fault of their own end up in shelters.

The concept of “mega adoptions” is simple: Bring all the adoptable dogs and cats to one facility.  Set a standard, low adoption rate. Make the event a fun-filled day for the entire family. Adopt all the pets.  Everybody wins!

How can you help?

Spread the word to your friends and network. This event will be big, fun, fast and happy!  Far too often families that would be the perfect match for an adoptable pet miss an opportunity of a lifetime because they “can’t bring themselves” to the shelters. Well now is their chance to meet the love of their lives at the Indiana State Fairgrounds!

For more information visit

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