The Greatest Roadtrip Ever!! Yuengling has a 190th birthday party and Brett Myces was there to witness it.

The epic Yuengling haul I drove 2100 miles for
Bottles of all the Yuengling brands
It has come time to sit back and reflect on the most epic road trip of all time. If you have been following the blog, you’re aware of my passion for Yuengling and anything even tangentially related, be it bratwurst, beer runs, supporting the “Bring Yuengling to Missouri” facebook group (Disclaimer KCBeerBlog and the Myces family has no relationship with the author of this group), or letter writing campaigns. After drawing inspiration from Andy Dufrain in Shawshank Redemption, I decided in the summer of 2017 I was going to start a letter writing campaign until they sold their beer in Missouri. I named my campaign “Bring MO Yuengling,” over 200 hand-written letters and a carpal tunnel syndrome diagnosis later I still cannot find it anywhere in The Show-Me State. 

It just so happened that I had two weeks off to attempt to kayak the Missouri River for the MR340 race. Unfortunately, there was a little bit of a flood and mother nature didn’t exactly cooperate so the race was postponed. This in turn led to my epic 44 hour, 2100 mile road trip. Yuengling was having a 190th birthday celebration on July 13th, and there was no chance in hell Brett Myces would miss this party. For perspective on the longevity of this brewery, here are some issues going on in 1829. The United States had 12 million people, John Quincy Adams was president, Missouri and Louisiana were the only states West of the Mississippi, Florida was still a territory, and the Oregon trail was yet to open. Heck the Civil War was 32 years away, and Prohibition was 90 years away. This was the perfect opportunity to arrive at the brewery and campaign for Yuengling personally.
This is actually how Brett Myces road trips
So I grabbed my maps and atlas, cell phone, digital camera, Ipod mini, portable breathalizer, Goo Goo Dolls CD and hit the road. I stopped in Saint Louis, Columbus OH, and Gettysburg PA on the way to Pottsville. After an anxious three days, I finally saw the road sign pointing to Pottsville. I slammed on my breaks, played frogger with two cars and a semi, and took a picture. For all I knew this might be as close as I could get. I thought the locals may have been tipped off regarding my arrival, with the local sheriff greeting me with a restraining order.
This was possibly as close as I might get
Luckily no sheriff appeared, so I checked into my hotel and went directly to the gift shop for a tour. Nervous with anticipation, I booked a tour, and was relieved no one asked for my driver's license. I nonchalantly perused the gift shop and waited for the tour to start.

The gift shop could be classified as a museum. The were old photos, original Yuengling bottles, and a history of the brewery. They were display cases showcasing each member of the Yuengling family as it was passed down through the generations. Only 3% of family business survive to a 4th generation and Yuengling has made is 6, it truly is an American success story.
Brett Myces and Mr. Dick Yuengling
What a tour it was. They take you through the old lagering caves and show you the brick wall that was built during prohibition, the brewing equipment, and the canning line. Halfway through the tour of the iconic brewery, I saw the man himself, Mr. Dick Yuengling, standing next to the canning line. Working up some courage, I walked up to him with rubber band legs and said, “Mr. Yuengling, can I please shake your hand?” He looked a little surprised by the comment, but acquiesced. I started a little bit of small talk, then said, “I’m your biggest fan, I’m Brett Myces, from Kansas City, Missouri.” It was at that moment, his eyes looked like they had seen a Sasquatch and he said, “It is great to finally meet you. You are a great friend. I read all of your letters.” After more small talk, he had to get back to work and I had a brewery tour to finish. 
The dreaded "Prohibition wall"

The Brewhouse

The tap handles at the brewery bar
As the tour finished, we each got two tasters of our favorite style, then were able to purchase a pint for $3. I sat down, gathered my composure, then approached one of the gift shop workers. After I asked, “Who reads your fan mail?” a confused look appeared on the lady’s face. Then I said, “I’m Brett Myces. I have sent all the letters from Missouri.” That’s when her face appeared even more perplexed, and she said, “You can’t be him. He is an old man. Only old men write letters any more.” Suddenly, the word spread through the gift shop like wildfire that I was there. After a few jokes, some pictures and great conversation, I finally decided I needed to purchase my beer for the trip home. As I was pulling up my car and loading the trunk, the Pottsville Republican Herald showed up. They were wanting some pictures for the upcoming party, when the girls told them they needed to interview Brett Myces. I discussed my loved of Yuengling, the ̶h̶a̶r̶a̶s̶s̶m̶e̶n̶t̶ dedicated letters, and my road trip. Lo and behold, I would end up making the front page of the Saturday morning edition. I then took a second tour and went to bed early, in anticipation of the big day.

I aroused from my slumber eager with excitement, and needed a hearty meal to calm my nerves. I was at a party 190 years in the making; it was going to be effing EPIC. Pottsville has 13,000 people and different estimates said anywhere between 15,000-25,000 people would be attending. It was so big, they were shuttling people on school buses to and from their vehicles. What was not to like? There were three stages, four bands, Better Than Ezra as the headliner, food trucks, fireworks, and Yuengling beer gardens, just for starters. I finished my first beer, then went back inside the gift shop to get out of the heat. The workers all said hi and directed me to Dick. We exchanged pleasantries again, then he gave me a “golden ticket”, a VIP Pass to the concert. This pass got me free food, unlimited Yuengling, access to the top floor of the parking garage overlooking the stage, and the best view of the fireworks in town. Throughout the evening, I ran into Jennifer, Sheryl, and Debbie Yuengling, and of course had to take a selfie with them as well as many of the gift shop workers. Once the party was over, I went back to the hotel room and laid in bed reminiscing about the best day ever. I cannot speak highly enough about the Yuengling family, employees, and the Pottsville community. The entire family was humble, grateful, and so down-to-earth it was surreal. The hospitality and helpfulness of their employees was bar-none, and everyone I met from the community was amazing. I cannot say it enough, everyone was completely AWESOME! 
Brett Myces and one of the infamous letters
Brett Myces and the gift shop girls
Sunday arrived with a headache and the realization that I had to drive 1,100 miles back home. I made a few stops along the way: the Flight 93 memorial (a very touching one), Morgantown WV, and Indianapolis. My total haul was over 30 cases, three growlers, and a story that would even make Sacharo Myces proud.

The Yuengling family reassured me they would get to Missouri eventually, but no timetable has been set, so the letter writing will continue. Afterall, it took Andy 6 years to get his library, but if there isn’t Yuengling in Missouri for the 200th anniversary, the three Myces Brothers, might have to schedule a sit-in at the brewery, or an organized march to Pottsville. If you want to join the cause to “Get MO Yuengling” their address is below.

Yuengling Brewery
420 Manhantongo Street
Pottsville, PA 17901

Brett A. Myces

View from the VIP deck away from the crowds
Toolshed Jack putting on a great show

Better Than Ezra

My 20 oz coffee cup turned beermug
A trunk full of Yuengling
The brewery is literally next to a church
The old school fire doors, when the rope burns, the weight drops and the door closes

The 4 Yuengling sisters

Giftshop memorabilia
More memorabilia
Giftshop swag

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