Co-op brewery puts on fundraiser for fellow cooperative
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RONAN — The Ronan Cooperative Brewery will hold another street closure event on Aug. 26, this time to raise money for the other cooperative in town, the Western Montana Musicians Co-op.
The co-ops have been working together for some time, the musicians filling every Wednesday at the brewery with live performances. The musicians co-op however, was recently hit with a significant rent increase in July.
“We’re talking from $200 to $1,200,” Jake Kimmel, Talent Coordinator of the musicians co-op and new taproom server at the brewery explained.
“Ever since I started working here, they always provided us with musicians. We wanted to show them some pure gratitude in some way,” taproom manager Eric Brunet commented. Upon hearing the need, they immediately began to work up a plan. “We had August open for a street closure and didn’t have anything planned, so we said, ‘let’s put something together to get a fundraiser for you guys and do what we can to help you out.’”
Working together, Brunet secured food for the evening in the form of That One Guy’s BBQ and Tacos food truck and Kimmel gathered artists to perform that evening.
The first on the list is the band The Wildflowers, a big name in the musician’s cooperative that has been involved since its beginning. A married couple, Kimmel described their style as “don’t worry be happy.” The second performer is a newer name in town, Matthew Morris.
“I don’t have much of his backstory but the more I’m getting the more I think this guy is a legit Rockstar,” Kimmel said. “I ran into him at karaoke. I walked in and heard this angel singing on the mic.” A deep voiced vocalist and guitar player, Kimmel explained Morris once performed in a Christian rock band with a large following out of an Evangelical church. Kimmel is working to get back in the music scene here in the valley.
Just as they did for the volunteer fire department back in April, the brewery will be donating proceeds from beer sales made during the event to the musicians co-op. “There’ll be strategically placed tip jars too,” Kimmel added with a laugh.
To learn more about the event and future fundraisers held by the brewery, visit them online at: facebook.com/RonanCooperativeBrewery.