|Senior to Present Research on Microbreweries at Honors Conference|
During the April 5th Southern Regional Honors Conference in Louisville, KY, Limestone College senior Kirstyn Burleson will present her research on the microbreweries of the Asheville, NC area.
Kirstyn, a History Pre-Law major from Asheville, is also a participant in Limestone's Honor Program, the Student Alumni Leadership Association, and the Saint's softball team.
"The presentation examines the history of the microbrewery industry in Asheville beginning with the earliest production to the continuous expansion into the area of breweries from other parts of the country," explained Kirstyn, who has been working on the project since the 2012 Fall Term. "In my research, I look as far back as the early colonial period for evidence in the ways beer helped shape, not only the location of downtown Asheville, but the families that have lived there for generations. With the help of the infamous mountain moonshine, I show evidence that the homegrown spirits are so intertwined with the definition of Asheville, that one cannot simply be excluded from the other."
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Not only does her research show the effects of past and current microbreweries in the area, but also the possible impact two new ones-Sierra Nevada in 2013 and New Belgium in 2015-will have on the community.
Kirstyn chose to do the project due to its major impact on the area from which she hails, as well as revolving around a very interesting topic. Of the whole experience, Kirstyn said, "The entire process has been enlightening for me because college students such as me are constricted by financial restraints when it comes to enjoying good local brew. I was able to try many award winning brews, some that contained interesting ingredients, like jalapeños. Aside from trying the actual product of these popular businesses, I have learned that the history of micro brewing has a direct link to the location of the city of Asheville. In fact, Asheville City Hall stands where it does today because of a tavern."