Maybe you've heard about Grand Rapids Community College's foray into the brewery world, well it's no longer some nebulous idea. It's real and it's now open.

This ceremony happened a week ago, however GRCC just uploaded the video of the cutting.

Now if you want to skip to the good part, click here.

So what's the story about the brewery?

Fountain Hill Brewery, housed on the first floor of the Wisner-Bottrall Applied Technology Center at 151 Fountain St. NE, is the only federal- and state-licensed brew pub in the country that is owned and operated on a college or university campus.

"The brewery and pub will help us make sure that the students in our new Craft Brewing, Packaging and Service Operations certificate program have hands-on experience in this high-demand industry," said President Dr. Steven C. Ender.

The first group of students in the program, offered through GRCC's Secchia Institute for Culinary Education, started their studies this summer. Their coursework will take place in the brewery, in the field and through internships.

The brewhouse features a three-barrel Craftwerks system, designed to brew about six kegs per batch. Students in the program work with a four-head counter pressure bottle filler, plate frame filter, dual head keg washer and lab equipment that includes titration sets, microscopes and a hemocytometer. While the beers on tap will change, the brewery currently is featuring Pale Ale, Scottish (CO2 and Nitro), Hefeweizen, American IPA, Baltic Porter (lagered), and Blonde Ale. The students in the program have helped create the products served on site.

Peter's Pub, located near the brewery and The Heritage restaurant, is named for philanthropist Peter Secchia. It seats about 50 people.

The brewery and pub will be open to the public during GRCC's academic year.

Grand Rapids Community College has been offering educational opportunities in West Michigan for more than 100 years. Established in 1914, the college offers degree courses, certification and training programs, and workshops and personal enrichment classes. Offerings are held on GRCC’s downtown Grand Rapids campus, and at several locations throughout Kent and Ottawa counties, as well as through distance learning.

Well, Grand Rapids is known as beer city, I guess it only makes sense there is now a local college course that teaches the science of the brew.

Pretty cool stuff if you ask me.

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