Beer: the real holiday spirit

By on December 26, 2018

In the spirit of this giving season, I would like to introduce Colin Herbine. Herbine is a beer rep, a.k.a. Beer Ranger, for the Fort Collins, Colo.-based New Belgium Brewing Company.

I got in contact with New Belgium after I spotted a photo on LinkedIn posted by Lancaster City Alliance. The post espoused the city’s Adopt-A-Block program, a volunteer effort to remove litter and debris from Lancaster streets, and featured a simple photo of a sign on a utility pole. The sign read: Adopt-A-Block sponsored by New Belgium Brewing. I had to know why a Colorado (and Asheville, N.C.) brewery was cleaning up the streets of Lancaster.

Enter Herbine, who adopted the block as an employee-owner of New Belgium.

“The reason I chose New Holland Avenue is because it’s walking distance from where I live,” said Herbine.

Colin Herbine (right), New Belgium ambassador, hard at work at Funck’s in Leola. (Submitted photos)

The effort matches two of New Belgium’s 10 core values: “kindling social, environmental and cultural change” and “environmental stewardship.”

Per his agreement with the City of Lancaster, Herbine must satisfy Adopt-A-Block Program requirements by cleaning up his section of New Holland Avenue from Plum Street to Franklin Street four times a year, or as needed.

“Basically from Quip’s down to the intersection, which also has Friendly Greek Bottle Shop,” said Herbine. “I go out once per quarter, but if I drive by and see it’s a little distressed, I’ll touch it up. As an individual I wanted to give back to my local community. I see it as important and so does New Belgium.”

This New Belgium Adopt-A-Block sign hangs in downtown Lancaster.

Originally from Horsham in Montgomery County, Herbine decided to stay in Lancaster after his time at Millersville University, where he majored in business administration. While in college he took a job working at a nearby beer distributor. He moved through the beer distribution and wholesale system until he heard about a position open with New Belgium.

“I cover central Pennsylvania. Twelve counties are my focus and my objective is to breathe and live everything New Belgium,” said 27-year old Herbine. “At times that does involve philanthropy. We are always seeking opportunities to benefit non-profits.”

One of the largest fundraising events sponsored by New Belgium in Lancaster is the annual Santa Stumble, which took place on Dec. 8 and raised $46,000 for the Lancaster City Police Mounted and K-9 Units.

“It’s really cool, because Lancaster City is one of the last areas to have a mounted unit,” said Herbine. “It’s preserving that heritage.”

For those not familiar, merrymakers at the Santa Stumble dress in Claus-ified gear, pay a donation granting free admission to several city venues, and try to visit all 20 participating bars. This year marked the ninth year of the event. The Stumble ties directly into the tenth New Belgium core value, which is “have fun” as well as the third by “promoting beer culture and the responsible enjoyment of beer.”

Cheers and thanks for reading!

Michael C. Upton is a freelance writer specializing in arts and leisure. He welcomes comments at somepromcu@gmail.com and facebook.com/SomebodiesProductions.

Revelers from the 2018 Lancaster Santa Stumble strike a pose. The Dec. 8 event raised $46,000 for the Lancaster City Police Mounted and K-9 Units.

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