GarryOwen Brewing Company
Owned and operated by combat veterans from our very own Fort Sill, GarryOwen Brewing is the first and only brewery in Lawton Oklahoma. Founder Steven Balog, AKA Chappy, served as a cavalry officer and chaplain, while co-founder David Randolph served as a field artillery NCO. Chappy recently opened a brew shop, Redd Rhenn Brewing, selling homebrew supplies to the citizens of Lawton. David frequents the store and competes in the beer brewing competitions hosted there. Chappy is a member of both the IZ Brew Club and Social Slurs, both of Lawton’s local home brew clubs, with David serving as the President of Social Slurs. With years of homebrewing beneath their belts, the two both brew craft beers popular in their social circles.
Garryowen, as we know it today, owes its roots to the beautiful country of Ireland. During the 1600’s, in the midst of economic hardship and poor working conditions, common folk would gather at the Garden of Owen in Limerick for picnics, parties, celebrations and an altogether good time. It gained its reputation as a place of simple fun and occasional tom foolery. The popularity and positive impact of the Garden eventually became immortalized in song, a song which the Irish spread wherever the work took them. Wherever an Irishman went, Garryowen became an anthem for the common man and the love of life. Nowhere else did its influence fall more heavy than on Great Britain and Colonial America, where it broke from the taverns of the common folk and into the classical music venues, dinner parties and formal balls of the wealthy.
As railroads and waterways expanded America, the tune accompanied businessmen and common folk alike. Another to adopt this song of celebration, love, joy and hope, was the American soldier. Defenders of the working men, their freedom and Constitution, American regiments began to utilize song and motto to inspire their ranks. The 7th Cavalry adopted the tune fully as their own. It served to build morale and esprit de corps. The history of this regiment and the legacy of the tune is traced in detail through the annals of history.
Whether in the first conventional victory of American troops in the Ia Drang valley of Vietnam, to the Longest Cavalry Charge of human history with the 3rd Squadron in Iraq. The song and spirit of Garryowen lives strong among soldiers. Lawton, Oklahoma built up alongside Ft. Sill, a cavalry post in its early years.
The Mighty Seventh brought this tune to the beautiful hills of the Wichita Mountain range. As the town developed, soldiers, railroad men, cattlemen, ranchers, farmers, and businessmen could be heard singing the tune in the taverns, meeting halls and streets of the thriving little city. People embracing life, embracing hope, embracing good.
The name GarryOwen connects with a history that pays tribute to the goal of the brewery: bringing people together, and encouraging them to not take all aspects of life seriously. It also pays tribute to the veterans who have sacrificed so much for the sake of others.
The location of GarryOwen is one we aren’t taking lightly. Currently we have chosen a spot that is situated next to Redd Rhenn Brew Supply. While it does need some work to fix it up for others to visit the brewery, it is ready for beer to be brewed. We are going to use the money raised to purchase our brewing system, as well as initial overhead. We have the recipes, and we have the manpower, all we need is the equipment.
OUR STRETCH GOAL
Our secondary goal is to raise $80,000 and purchase a larger system, allowing us to brew multiple types of beer at the same time. We are planning to sell our beer to the local restaurants, and are crossing our fingers that the Oklahoma laws change and we can sell our beer out of our storefront.
If you love the good things in life. If you hope for goodwill among all mankind. If you embrace a place to feel accepted for who you are and not what you have, join us for a round of the best beer in this city.
May your hearts be filled with the Joy of Life.