COMING OF AGE with
DICK & JANE
SACRED STORY of
BREWMASTERS! How the founders of the Urban Growler, Jill Pavlak and Deb Loch, broke into a male-dominated industry
ON THE COVER Jill Pavlak and Deb Loch — pictured with Frankie, their 3-yearold chiweenie from Secondhand Hounds — left their day jobs to found Minnesota’s first women-owned brewery. Photos by Tracy Walsh
CZECH IT OUT! If you have to choose one city to visit, put Prague on your short list. Trdelnik, a traditional street treat in Prague, is made from pastry dough that’s wrapped around a stick, grilled and rolled in sugar and nut mixes.
→→Correction A calendar item in the July issue of Good Age incorrectly listed the admission to the 10,000 Lakes Concours d’Elegance in Excelsior as free. Tickets are $25 per person for the event, which is free for ages 12 and younger.
6 / August 2018 / Minnesota Good Age
GOOD START FROM THE EDITOR
8 Meet the amazing women behind the Urban Growler in St. Paul.
10 The Bear had a way of roping me into strange culinary situations.
12 Today’s children can still enjoy traditional Dick and Jane readers.
14 See why Pipestone National Monument is a sacred site among native peoples.
GOOD HEALTH CAREGIVING
16 Caregivers play a vital role in the nutrition of their loved ones.
GOOD LIVING FINANCE
22 Donations to charity can still bring you tax benefits if you’re savvy.
30 CAN’T-MISS CALENDAR BRAIN 32 TEASERS
FROM THE EDITOR Volume 37 / Issue 8 PUBLISHER
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8 / August 2018 / Minnesota Good Age
Pioneers of beer BY SARAH JACKSON
innesota, it would seem, is fast becoming the Land of 10,000 Beers. OK, that’s a bit of an exaggeration. But isn’t it crazy that we now have more than 150 breweries in our state — and a fifth of those (30!) opened in 2017? How did we get here? Well, apparently, we love beer. If there’s a brew bubble, it hasn’t popped yet, thanks to our love of unique IPAs, porters, cream ales, sours, pilsners and hefeweizens, too! But long before the state surpassed triple digits, came some of the scene’s earliest pioneers — this Photo by Tracy Walsh tracywalshphoto.com month’s Good Age Cover Stars: Meet Jill Pavlak and Deb Loch, who founded the Urban Growler taproom and restaurant in St. Paul, becoming the first women-owned brewery in the state in 2014. Back then there were only 20-something craft breweries on the scene. But the two working professionals saw an opportunity to both live out their encore-career dreams and capitalize on the burgeoning craft-beer movement. Loch, a longtime homebrewer and biomedical engineer, dreamed of selling her custom-brewed creations to the community. Pavlak, a business sales guru, had always wanted to run her own restaurant. Today the partners — in business and in life — have succeeded on both fronts with their beers on tap or for sale at more than 400 outlets in the Twin Cities. They also boast one of the few taprooms in the state offering a full restaurant experience with lunch and dinner six days a week. Their 13,000-square-foot enterprise also includes an inviting outdoor beer garden, plus two spaces for special events and a seasonal Sunday farmers market in the parking lot. Yeah, it’s all pretty impressive. Equally remarkable is the duo’s hands-on work ethic, humility and gratitude about their good fortune, and their ability to treat everyone with kindness. Loch’s knack for crafted delicious beers and Pavlak’s business savvy don’t hurt either. “We want to be in the top 10 breweries in the state,” Pavlak said, “not necessarily in terms of volume, but in terms of reputation.” I, for one, think they’re well on their way.
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A fishy tale BY DAVE NIMMER
he featured topic for this month’s Minnesota Good Age is dining. Dining reminds me of cooking, and cooking prompts memories of Bob Schranck (The Bear), my old newspaper colleague who loved to cook. On one occasion, he put me in the middle of a most humbling — no, it was humiliating — experience with food preparation. It was more than a few years ago when Schranck, one of my best friends who died in 2010, talked me into being a part of his wild game cooking demonstration at the Northwest Sports Show, a spring event in the Twin Cities attended by thousands. More than 100 people gathered on a Sunday afternoon at The Bear’s demonstration, dubbed Wild in the Kitchen (after his cookbook of the same name). I was to reveal my easy-to-prepare, hardto-top tinfoil trout, a fishing camp version of poached lake trout fillets. I’d searched the local grocery stores for fresh trout fillets — Lunds, Byerlys and Kowalski’s – and couldn’t find any. The Bear said not to worry, that he had some frozen trout fillets, which were “the next best thing” to fresh. I should have known better. When I opened this freezer package prior to the demo, I knew they weren’t even close to fresh. The orange color had faded to drab grey. They appeared to have freezer burn, and I thought I could detect a faint odor. After the fillets had been cooking in the tin foil for about five minutes on high
10 / August 2018 / Minnesota Good Age
heat in an electric frying pan, my worst fear was realized: The fish was, at best, past its prime. I began to notice a very fishy smell. And I could do nothing to fix it, except to keep on blabbering about how good this recipe is when you have “freshly caught” lake trout. Finally, I couldn’t prolong the agony. I took the fillets from their foil wraps, cut them into 2-inch squares and put them on small paper plates with little plastic forks. Meanwhile, The Bear had recruited a boy of probably about 10 years old to come up and try the first piece. This was tantamount to child abuse. As I recall, the kid cut off a small piece of trout with the fork and put it in his mouth. The look on his face could charitably be described as surprised. He didn’t take a second bite. I don’t recall a second customer
▲▲Bob Schranck (The Bear) shared his passion for hunting, fishing and cooking game through the outdoors pages of the Star Tribune during the ’80s and ’90s. Photo courtesy of Dave Nimmer
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— even though half a dozen of the 20 plates were gone by the end of the session. When it was all over, I was slumped in a chair in front of the frying pan. The Bear tried to console me. “It wasn’t as bad as you thought,” he said. “Really?” “No, you overreacted.” “Well,” I said, “why don’t you try one of these right now?” So he did. He ate the whole piece in one bite. He licked his lips, stayed quiet for a bit and appeared to be processing the event, searching for a perspective. “Well, this clearly isn’t up to your usual standard,” he said, “But none of these pieces is big enough to hurt anyone.”
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Growing up with Dick and Jane BY CAROL HALL
ur elementary school was built in the late 1800s. A sturdy, two-story, red-brick edifice with white trim, it was typical of the times. The kindergarten classroom had high ceilings and long narrow windows along one wall. It contrasted with the dark, enclosed cloakroom, where a row of hooks held our coats. In winter, we’d leave snow pants, mufflers and snow boots there, as well. Naptime was midafternoon. We’d each lie on the polished hardwood floor on a rag rug from home. Afterward, there’d be a snack of chocolate milk and a banana. With Teacher at the piano, we sang songs (one may have been about a sunbeam) learned from memory. Whatever else happened in kindergarten and the other primary grades is a blur, with the exception of our first-grade primers, the Dick and Jane readers. I was enchanted with their lovely watercolor illustrations depicting Dick and Jane, their parents, pets and little sister, Sally, playing games and learning about life. Misty memories of the pictures’ bright colors and movement certainly carried over into adulthood. The contemporary book, Growing Up With Dick and Jane: Learning and Living the American Dream, has happily brought those readers back into focus. Authored by Carole Kismaric and Marvin 12 / August 2018 / Minnesota Good Age
Heiferman, and published by Harper Collins in 1996, it’s an entertaining and informative text that tracks important historical, social and educational events of the “Dick and Jane era,” from the 1930s to the 1960s. I purchased the book for my nephew, Alex, to compare earlier teaching methods with those being practiced with his first-grade daughter, Hazel, today. Perusing it, I discovered just how much more than the mechanics of reading we learned from Dick and Jane back in that old brick building so long ago. Through conversation and behavior, the pair taught us proper manners. Good citi-
zenship, fair play and respect for elders also were stressed. Dick was responsible, overseeing his younger sisters, helping around the house. Jane was pretty, bright-eyed and stable. They made perfect role models. But it was those wonderful pictures, filled with drama and surprise, that really told the stories: “Illustrations in Dick and Jane books worked just as hard as the words printed
FIND THE BOOKS! Penguin Young Readers offers Dick and Jane books in classic and early reader formats, including hardback options. Learn more at penguinrandomhouse.com or amazon.com.
Find Your spot
Through conversation and behavior, the pair taught us proper manners. Good citizenship, fair play and respect for elders also were stressed.
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beneath them,” wrote the authors in their retrospective. “Simple as they might seem, they were full of complex details and information a child could study and discover — the kind of sneakers Dick wore, how a sprinkler attached to a hose, how Mother bent her knees when she jumped rope. Movie-like, they looked spontaneous and true-to-life because the illustrators worked from photographs.” Teachers loved Dick and Jane books because they did their job so well. But in the 1960s, parents started moving away from traditional family life. The ethnic and racial mix in the U.S. was changing. Dick and Jane had become dated. They were retired and replaced with reading programs appropriate to the times. Nevertheless, I’m guessing the replica booklet, We Look and See, and the paper dolls of Dick and Jane that came with Growing Up With Dick and Jane will enchant my great-great niece, Hazel, as much as they once did me. Carol Hall lives in Woodbury. She’s a longtime freelance writer, a University of Minnesota graduate and a former Northwest Airlines stewardess. Send comments and questions to email@example.com. Minnesota Good Age / August 2018 / 13
Pipestone’s sacred story BY JESSICA KOHEN
n Aug. 25, 1937, the U.S. established Pipestone National Monument in Southwest Minnesota. The monument covers 301 acres and includes quarry pits and the prairie landscape surrounding them. Today indigenous people from across North America come to the site to work the pipestone at 56 active pits, offering up the soft red stone so famously used for ceremonial pipes and other items. A gentle slope marks the eastern edge of a long plateau that begins in the Dakotas and runs southeast to Iowa. In Pipestone County, the slope is broken by stone outcroppings that native peoples have quarried for centuries. For Native Americans, this land is 14 / August 2018 / Minnesota Good Age
sacred. For the Oceti Sakowin, the people of the Seven Council Fires — which includes Dakota- and Lakota-speaking tribes — it’s a place of creation. Among the Oceti Sakowin, the Yankton Sioux of South Dakota are known as the protectors of the quarry. Though pipestone exists at many locations in North America, the quarries at Pipestone National Monument became the preferred source of pipestone among tribes living on the Great Plains because of the quality of the stone. Oral traditions of the Oceti Sakowin tell how pipestone was created by the red blood of the ancestors, and of how smoke carries prayers to the Great Spirit, making the pipes created from the red rock highly sacred.
Pipestone pipes have been, and are still, used in ceremonies, given as gifts and traded. Native Americans store pipe bowls, stems and tobacco with other sacred objects. They also bury pipes with the dead.
▲▲American Indians used pipestone, a relatively soft stone well-suited to carving, to create pipes like this one. Photo courtesy of the Minnesota Historical Society
⊳⊳ Painter George Catlin created this oil-on-canvas image of the Pipestone quarry in 1836. Image courtesy of the Smithsonian American Art Museum
Sacred pipes have inspired stories that have been passed down for generations. In the book The Sacred Pipe, Black Elk, a Lakota elder, shared the tale of White Buffalo Calf Woman, a spiritual (wakan) woman who presents the pipe to the people and then turns into a white buffalo. “Holding the pipe up with its stem to the heavens, she said, ‘All these peoples, and all the things of the universe, are joined to you who smoke the pipe — all send their voices to Wakan-Tanka, the Great Spirit. When you pray with this pipe, you pray for and with everything.’” In 1836, painter, author and traveler George Catlin arrived at the pipestone quarries to witness the craft firsthand. His paintings and writings drew national attention to the area. Pipestone is a relatively soft stone that’s well-suited to hand carving. However, it’s typically found sandwiched between extremely hard layers of Sioux quartzite, and extracting the stone can be hard work. Contemporary indigenous people maintain the tradition of hand-quarrying stone using only sledgehammers, chisels, pry bars and wedges. They’re taught to use all the quarried stone, if possible, or return it to Mother Earth. Over the years, skilled artisans have created many pipe designs, including long-stemmed pipes, elbow and disk forms and a T-shaped calumet. Carvers also have made elaborate animal and human effigies. When the Pipestone monument was established in 1937, it included a commitment to preserve the rights of Native Americans to quarry in a traditional
manner. Previously, the Treaty of 1858 Booth Manor included a provision stating that the Residence For Seniors 62+ Yankton Sioux held exclusive rights to quarry pipestone. In 1928, after more • 1 Bedrooms • Based on Income than 30 years of legal maneuvering, the • Utilities Included federal government took over those • Service Coordinator rights. However, between 1928 and 1937, • Resident Activities & Programs • Community Room the Pipestone Indian School managed • Smoke-Free Building access to the quarry, opening it up to 1421 Yale Place, Mpls American Indians from any tribe. When 612-338-6313 the monument was dedicated in 1937, that practice was codified. Booth Manor GA 0114 12.indd 1 12/6/13 10:14 AM Gold Money Express Visitors can learn more about the quarries, sacred pipes and Native AmerWe Buy/Sell Gold & Silver ican culture in the Pipestone National Gold & Silver Jewelry · Diamonds Monument visitor center, which includes Gold Watches · Platinum · Coins & Bullion Sterling Silverware · Pre-65 Silver Coins a museum, a small theater, exhibits, Dental Gold · And a Lot More! displays, demonstration areas and a gift Bring this ad and get 20% EXTRA MONEY! (WHEN YOU SELL YOUR GOLD JEWELRY ITEMS TO US) shop. It also offers an access point to a ¾-mile paved loop trail that affords We Offer Free Evaluation Southdale Mall for Your Gold & Silver (2nd floor Macy’s Wing) scenic views of several natural and Coin Collection 952.583.9976 historic points of interest inside the goldmoneyexpress.com monument. (Learn more at nps.gov.)
A second site to explore
Seventy-two miles east of Pipestone National Monument, on the same plateau, are more than 5,000 petroglyphs, designs chiseled into blocks of quartzite by ancestors of today’s native peoples. The carvings at Jeffers Petroglyphs date from 7,000 to 250 years ago. Like the pipestone quarries, the site is sacred, a place of worship. On select dates this summer and fall, visitors to the Minnesota Historical Society’s petroglyph site can explore off the regular path to see the rock face in the evening when the lighting is at its best for viewing the carvings. (Learn more at mnhs.org.) Jessica Kohen is the media relations manager for the Minnesota Historical Society.
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Managing nutrition for loved ones BY BRANDI JEWETT
eals often are tied to warm memories of family and friends gathered together. But for a caregiver of an older adult, meals can represent a source of stress — for both parties. Proper nutrition is important for maintaining a healthy mind and body, of course. However, older adults tend to eat and drink less for a variety of reasons, including physical difficulties with eating and drinking, decreased appetite caused by medication side effects and even a naturally diminishing sense of thirst that often occurs with aging. Caregivers may need to take on responsibilities such as buying groceries, preparing meals and assisting with feeding to ensure balanced diets for their loved ones.
Best practices Before heading to the grocery store, it’s important to know nutritional guidelines for older adults are different from those for other age groups. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s guidelines for seniors recommend choosing food packed with nutrients, vitamins, minerals and fiber. When applying these guidelines to a plate fixed for an older adult, fruits and vegetables should take up one half, and the remaining half should be divided between grains, proteins and dairy products. The USDA recommends older adults consume nutrient-dense offerings such as whole-grain items, lean meats, beans, nuts and yogurt. Following these guidelines may 16 / August 2018 / Minnesota Good Age
represent a significant change in diet for an older adult — and a challenge for a caregiver facing a care partner’s longestablished eating habits and preferences. Unless a medical condition requires immediate diet changes, nutritionists recommend gradually substituting healthier options into meals as a means of introducing new foods.
Helping out Food is only one part of the mealtime experience. The physical act of eating can be difficult for some older adults and may require assistance from a caregiver. For older adults who experience mouth soreness or difficulty chewing or swallowing, care experts recommend serving soft foods, cutting food into small pieces or pureeing food to make consumption easier. Loss of appetite caused by medication
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Before heading to the grocery store, it’s important to know nutritional guidelines for older adults are different from those for other age groups. side effects or a natural dulling of taste buds that accompanies aging can affect an older adult’s desire to eat, too. Caregivers can make meals more enticing by varying tastes and textures, incorporating brightly colored foods and enhancing food’s flavor with herbs, spices and condiments that are low in sodium. Minor physical activity also may increase an older adult's appetite. Caregivers who notice that meals tend to create stress and confusion for their care partners, can take steps to simplify the experience. This includes putting only what’s necessary for the meal on the table, keeping the number of food choices small and using smaller plates to serve only one food at a time. Though it can be a huge challenge, managing nutrition and removing obstacles at mealtimes can help older adults maintain their energy, preserve their immune systems and decrease stress associated with eating. Brandi Jewett is a writing specialist with Lyngblomsten, a Christian nonprofit organization that provides health care, housing and community resources to older adults in the Twin Cities. Lyngblomsten is a member of the Metropolitan Caregiver Service Collaborative. Minnesota Good Age / August 2018 / 17
e r u s e v a o e r r t Prague beckons as one of the best cities in all of Europe for architecture and charm By Victor Block
â–˛â–˛Old Town Prague comes into view through an arch of the famed Charles Bridge.
ost visitors to the Czech Republic confine their stay to Prague — and with good reason. Known as “the city of a hundred spires,” it’s actually decorated by nearly a thousand towers and steeples. In fact, Prague challenges the most magnificent capitals of Europe with its beauty and a rich history that stretches back over a millennium.
Minnesota Good Age / August 2018 / 19
The ancient and pedestrian-friendly Charles Bridge features a tower on each end that visitors can climb for expansive city views.
Since the Middle Ages, Prague (Praha) has been recognized as one of the most vibrant cultural settings on the continent. And love for the city hasn’t waned: In 2014, TripAdvisor ranked the city fifth in a list of best destinations in the world, thanks to its collection of major museums and numerous theaters, concert halls, galleries and other entertainment venues. This splendid city overwhelms visitors with its architecture, which provides a feast for the eyes, then envelops them in an aura of living history. Just when you think you’ve seen the most majestic building possible, you turn a corner and come upon another gem that surpasses it in grandeur. The profusion of ancient palaces, castles and cathedrals creates a rich mosaic of outstanding masterpieces in styles that stretch back more than 1,000 years. Romanesque chapels stand in the shadow of soaring Gothic cathedrals. Baroque palaces are neighbors to late 20 / August 2018 / Minnesota Good Age
19th-century Art Nouveau buildings and examples of early 20th-century Cubism. As a result, it’s easy to understand why the entire city center has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its cultural and physical importance. The fact that its buildings survived World War II remarkably intact, unlike many throughout Europe, adds to its appeal. At the same time, strolling through its off-the-beaten-path neighborhoods provides introductions to very different, yet no less enticing, attractions. The 13th-century Old Town consists of a labyrinth of winding alleys and picturesque squares, as does the notquite-so-old New Town, which dates back to 1348. A famous landmark in the Old Town’s central square is an imposing tower, which has looked out over the setting for nearly seven centuries. A crowd of both visitors and city residents gathers each hour from dawn to dark to watch the square’s 15th-century astronomical clock
put on its brief but impressive show. A small door opens and a miniature statue of Christ marches out followed by his disciples, as the skeleton of death tolls the hour on the clock’s bell. Lesser Town, also known as the Little Quarter, is clustered around the foothills on which the Prague Castle is perched. The neighborhood was born in the 8th century as a market settlement. Its cobbled streets are lined by small shops, traditional restaurants, pubs and restored ancient buildings. The sprawling castle grounds, which claims the title of largest medieval castle complex in the world at 18 acres, dates back to 880. It served as the seat of power for a parade of kings and emperors, and today is the official residence of the president of the Czech Republic. In addition to four palaces, you’ll find residences, cathedrals and churches, defensive towers and several museums with collections of art, toys and historic artifacts.
▲▲Built in the 15th century, Prague’s astronomical clock puts on a show in Old Town every hour from dawn to dusk.
Adding color to the setting are six terraced gardens, including the Renaissance Garden which was laid out in 1534. Those plantings provide only a hint of more than 200 gardens and parks dotted throughout the city. The oldest were founded in the Middle Ages and were attached to monasteries, palaces or houses of the wealthy. Another must-see for visitors to Prague is the graceful Charles Bridge, which well deserves its reputation as one of the most beautiful and iconic stone bridges anywhere. It’s spanned the Vltava River since the 14th century, and today is one of more than 30 within Prague. A line of statues placed along its balustrades in the 17th and early 18th centuries depicts saints who were venerated at that time. Throughout the day, the bridge is packed with tourists who traipse across it, pausing to check out souvenirs, jewelry and other goods displayed in kiosks, listen to the sounds of busking musicians or simply to enjoy the beautiful view of the castle in the distance. Learn more at czechtourism.com. Victor Block is a veteran travel writer and has contributed to numerous national publications. He is known as the Tenacious Traveler.
Souvenirs, such as these traditional Czech dolls, charm tourists in the heart of Prague. Minnesota Good Age / August 2018 / 21 Rileys Travel GA 0818 V3.indd 1
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A new world of charitable tax breaks BY TERESA AMBORD
f you’re wondering whether your donations to charity will bring you any tax benefits now that the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act has passed, rest assured, there are several ways. And they’re important to know: More than ever, charities will need your help. Some nonprofits are worried that with the new tax rules, donations will plunge. Pessimistic estimates suggest the number of households that will donate to charities will plummet from roughly 37 million, to 16 million in 2018. As before, only taxpayers who itemize deductions can claim charitable donations on their tax returns. But one consequence of the TCJA is that the standard deduction nearly doubled, which means fewer people will itemize. For singles, the standard deduction is now $12,000 (up from $6,350) and for married joint-filers, the standard deduction is now $24,000 (up from $12,700). While that’s great for a lot of people, it means many will no longer itemize deductions and therefore, won’t get the tax break. Never fear: There are still some ways to satisfy your charitable inclinations and benefit at tax time:
A donor-advised fund A donor-advised fund (DAF) is a fund your advisor can set up specifically to support the charitable organizations you care about. DAFs allow you to take a charitable income tax deduction when you contribute funds, even if you defer 22 / August 2018 / Minnesota Good Age
deciding which charities to support and for how much. The money you sock away grows tax-free, which leads to even more money to donate later. Although the contributions to your DAF are irrevocable, you, as the fund owner, retain advisory privileges as to how the account assets are distributed. Depending on how much you put into a DAF, you may exceed the standard deduction at tax time, and qualify to take an itemized deduction, in addition to growing tax-free income. An added bonus to creating a DAF is that, though you get the immediate tax benefit of socking money into the fund, you can sit back and observe the charities you’re considering, to see how well they function. One more tax benefit: Some DAFs are equipped to accept appreciated assets such as real estate and securities. By donating appreciated assets to a DAF, you avoid the capital gains you’d have to pay if you sold the property — win-win.
Alternating years You may choose to beat the standard deduction by “bunching” your donations. Suppose you and your spouse generally donate $20,000 per year to a favorite charity. Make your donation for — let’s say 2019 — early in the year. In January 2019, donate $20,000. Then, instead of donating another $20,000 in January 2020, send it in December 2019. That gives you a $40,000 donation for 2019, and effectively covers both years.
Your next donations would be in January and December of 2021. Every other year, you’ll exceed the standard deduction.
The RMD loophole If you’re at least 701/2 and you have an IRA, you probably know you must take annual required minimum distributions (RMDs) of taxable income. But did you know you can avoid taxation on some of that money by donating it to a qualified charity directly from your IRA? A single person can donate up to $100,000 and a married couple can donate up to $200,000. You can’t also claim a charitable deduction on your tax return, but the tax benefit comes because the amount donated lowers your taxable adjusted gross income, which then lowers your RMD. Lowering your RMD means more of your IRA funds can continue to grow. It also may make it easier to qualify for deductions that depend on an income floor, such as net investment income tax. One word of caution: The distribution must be made to a qualified charity directly from your IRA. If you receive the RMD and then write a check to the charity yourself, you lose a significant tax advantage. That’s why it’s critical to have your IRA trustee make the distribution, not you. Stay tuned to IRS updates about the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act at irs.gov/newsroom/tax-reform. Teresa Ambord is a former accountant, a longtime freelance writer and an occasional contributor to Good Age.
Deb Loch and Jill Pavlak left their day jobs to study the brewing and restaurant industries. In 2014, they opened Urban Growler Brewing Company in St. Paulâ€™s St. Anthony Park neighborhood. Photos by Tracy Walsh
24 / August 2018 / Minnesota Good Age
AGAINST THE GRAIN How a biomedical engineer and a business sales guru became the founders of Minnesotaâ€™s first women-owned microbrewery by Olivia Volkman-Johnson
win Cities residents Deb Loch and Jill Pavlak were on a bike ride one afternoon in the neighborhood of St. Anthony Park when they happened upon a rather old brick building, seemingly out of place
among the industrial warehouses. The
used to be a horse stable and maintenance depot, housed a pottery studio and a vacant unit. Pavlak and Loch, who were shopping around for a space for their new brewery, immediately knew: This was the place. Six years later, Urban Growler Brewing Company opened its doors to anyone and everyone looking for good food, good beer and a good time. Pavlak, a Minneapolis native, studied at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities for speech communications and psychology â€” two unlikely, yet effective qualifications for the owner of a brewery.
Jill Pavlak and Deb Loch started canning their Urban Growler beer about a year ago.
I like making people happy. That’s my part of this. She likes to make beer that people love. So we decided we would do both. — Jill Pavlak, co-owner of the Urban Growler Brewing Company in St. Paul
Pavlak spent most of her life
Pavlak and Loch first met on Match.com
Rewind back to just two years into their
working in sales, but she always
in 2006. After chatting on the phone for
relationship — Pavlak and Loch were
dreamed of opening a restaurant.
a while, the two decided to meet at the
sitting at home, dissatisfied with their
Happy Gnome in St. Paul, though Loch
careers, brainstorming what their next
wasn’t sure how well the date would go.
move would be.
“I wanted a restaurant,” said Pavlak, who quickly noted a key difference from working in high-stakes business sales. “If
“She was a little uptight sounding, so
“We would be sitting there, drinking
you screw up an order, it takes months to
I had a friend call me an hour into the
Deb’s homebrew and thinking, ‘What
repair that relationship. If someone comes
meeting,” said Loch, who told her friend
should we do?’” Pavlak said.
in here and they order a meal they’re not
to pretend to be ill so she could escape
in love with, I can take care of that in 30
the date, if needed.
seconds, and they’ll be happy. It’s a much shorter sales cycle.” Loch, meanwhile, grew up working in her family restaurant in Appleton, Wisconsin. “Of course, the last thing I wanted to do was be in the restaurant business — because that’s what my folks did,” Loch said. “So I went off to college and became a biomedical engineer.”
With Loch’s talent for brewing and Pavlak’s desire to open a restaurant, the idea for
After meeting Pavlak, however, Loch
Urban Growler Brewing Company was born.
decided she didn’t want the date to end
“I like making people happy. That’s my
early. Just as Loch was realizing this, her
part of this. She likes to make beer that
people love,” Pavlak said. “So we decided
“Oh, there’s your ‘out’ call,’” Pavlak said. Loch was mortified: “She knew. She totally knew.” The two married on Friday the 13th in
we would do both.” The two moved to California for Loch’s Master Brewers Program at UC-Davis, then returned to Minnesota for Loch to
2013 — “My lucky number,” Pavlak said
apprentice at Summit Brewing Company,
— despite the fact that they were in the
while Pavlak gained restaurant-
by day and crafting home brews by night,
middle of building the brewery, suffering
management experience with Blue Plate
Loch discovered a passion for brewing.
from bad colds and enduring another
Restaurant Company in Minneapolis.
Working in the medical-device industry
“Even though I went to undergrad in Milwaukee, I never realized that brewing
brutal Minnesota winter. “We just had 50 people at our house,”
“We kind of immersed ourselves in the industry,” Loch said. “We went to
could be a career,” Loch said. “In fact,
Loch said. “It was a lot of fun in the
conferences, met people, talked to people
being a biomedical engineer is perfect
middle of a whole lot of hell. Truly, the
and traveled to different taprooms and
training for being a professional brewer.”
best day of my life.”
breweries to help formulate our idea.”
26 / August 2018 / Minnesota Good Age
Pavlak and Loch visited Mountain Sun Pub & Brewery in Boulder, Colorado, to talk with experienced brewers about their goals for Urban Growler. “We told them we wanted to open a brewery in Minnesota and they treated us like VIPs,” Loch said. “We thought we were something special.” Pavlak and Loch sat in the pub for
been making beer since the 1990s) moved
raise the money they needed, starting with a
forward with Urban Growler.
fund-raising event in that old brick building.
But in the male-dominated field of
“In our empty shell of a taproom, we
brewing, gaining financial support for a
had kind of the ‘bake sale’ version of
female-owned brewery turned into an
fund-raising,” Loch said. “We gave away
samples of my homebrew and pork
Two comments that stick out in Pavlak’s head — from banks who denied their loan applications — were: “What are women
carnitas, and just told our story over and over and over again.” Today those who attended the fund-raiser
two hours taking notes, observing the
your age going to do working those crazy
and helped Pavlak and Loch raise enough
interactions between patrons and staff
hours?” and “How are you girls going to
money to get Urban Growler off the ground
members when they noticed something
carry those big bags of grain?”
are commemorated on the Founders plaque,
pleasantly surprising. “We realized they treated everybody like that,” Pavlak said. “Everybody was treated like they were something special.” Their visit was so influential that
“That was truly the hardest part,” Pavlak said. “We were going above and beyond.” Collectively they had an enormous
proudly displayed in the taproom. Following the fundraiser, Pavlak and Loch were finally approved to get a loan from a
wealth of professional experience,
farmer’s bank in Mankato — 13th time's the
an award-winning business plan and
charm — within two weeks of applying.
elements of the Mountain Sun logo were
stellar credit. They had worked in
incorporated into the Urban Growler logo.
their prospective industries and even
‘BECAUSE IT’S GOOD BEER’
Preserving the exposed brick and warm
“It’s to remind us of our experience at Mountain Sun,” Pavlak said. “It’s to
“We’re just darn good women,” Pavlak
natural light of the original building,
remind us that we want to be that for
said. “So why would they not even
Urban Growler Brewing Company opened
in July 2014, making instant waves as the
But even being denied loans from 12
first women-owned brewery in the state
different banks around the Twin Cities
of Minnesota — a fact that was somewhat
With a clear vision and ample experience,
didn’t discourage Pavlak and Loch from
lost on its founders at first.
Pavlak (who has been studying the
pursuing their dream.
industry since 2008) and Loch (who had
They became even more determined to
“People brought it to our attention and we were like, ‘That cannot be true,’”
A Southern fried chicken sandwich and fresh garden salad are among the many food offerings at the Urban Growler, which serves both lunch and dinner.
Minnesota Good Age / August 2018 / 27
Pavlak said. “It’s an interesting fact that
for them because you can see a common
emphasize the pitfalls of making assump-
we’re women-owned and Deb is the
goal being shared across the company.”
tions and discriminating.
should buy our beer because of that?
MESHING LEADERSHIP STYLES
here,” Pavlak said. “It doesn’t matter
Not necessarily. But if you’re sitting
Clapp, who has worked at the brewery for
if you’re young, old, with kids, without
there, looking at two beers and the fact
two years, said another one of the things
kids, someone alone, transgender, GLBT,
that we’re women-owned interests you,
that drew him into the job was Pavlak's
families. Everyone is welcome here. That
great. Don’t buy it again if you don’t
and Loch’s contrasting leadership styles.
is the most important thing to me. They’re
“We want everyone to feel welcome
master brewer. Does that mean you
like our beer. But you will — because it’s good beer.” Though the brewery being womenowned can attract patrons, Urban Growler’s event manager Liz Foster said
“I liked how opposite they were of each other,” Clapp said. “I loved how different they were and how well they worked together as a team.” Being a married couple has its
greeted when they walk through the door; they’re thanked when they leave.” That culture of acceptance, however, once put Pavlak and Loch in a difficult position when a group of regular patrons
the quality food and drink Pavlak and
advantages when running a business
made lewd, inappropriate comments
Loch produce help the brewery thrive.
together. Pavlak and Loch, however,
about a female server.
“The good beer itself does wonders,” she said. “That already sets you up for success.” In addition, general manager Dave Clapp said Pavlak and Loch’s determination and commitment draw in customers and potential employees alike. “Deb and Jill don’t just preach the
sometimes have to compromise when it
“These were regulars — and we liked
comes to co-leading a single enterprise.
them. They were nice guys,” Pavlak said.
“We’re very different in our work methodologies,” Loch said. “I’ll be like, ‘I’ll
and it was brought to our attention
get back to you when I figure it out.’”
and we 86’d them from this place. They
“And I want everyone to have input,” Pavlak said.
ended up making a post on Facebook saying they had even more respect for
“Both are good and both are important,
principles and beliefs of Urban Growler,
but I think in the beginning we were like,
they live them,” Clapp said. “They are
‘Your way is wrong.’ And I think now
actively involved in the company daily.
we’ve figured it out,” Loch said.
They are willing to jump in and bus dishes, seat tables or just chat with and get to
COMMUNITY AND ACCEPTANCE
know new patrons. They participate as
As two married women in a male-domi-
part of the team, rather than just handing
nated industry — who almost didn’t make
out orders. People are excited to work
it because of this fact — Pavlak and Loch
Urban Growler Brewing Company beers like these are for sale at about 300 retailers in the Twin Cities.
“Apparently they made these comments
CELEBRATE! What: Urban Growler Brewing Company will mark four years of business with an anniversary party, featuring live music and special events. When: 11 a.m.–10 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 22, with live music starting at 5 p.m. Where: 2325 Endicott St., St. Paul. Though it calls itself a taproom, it boasts an in-house kitchen that opens at 11 a.m. daily (closed Mondays), which makes it one of the few breweries in town where you can grab a full meal with table service. Bonus: There’s also a weekly farmer’s market on site — 11 a.m.–5 p.m. Sundays through Oct. 14 — featuring local vendors.
Info: urbangrowlerbrewing.com 28 / August 2018 / Minnesota Good Age
this place. They were out of line and they owned it. They’re still not welcome back because they made her uncomfortable, but if you know these things are happening, no one should tolerate it.” Urban Growler also supports local communities through philanthropicminded events, such as karaoke and game nights, during which $1 of every pint of a selected beer sold goes to a local cause. Pavlak and Loch also support Minnesota businesses and communities by buying from local farms — part of their trademarked Plow to Pint series of brews — featuring local ingredients such
In addition to an outdoor beer garden, the Urban Growler’s 13,000 square feet of space in St. Paul includes a brewery, a taproom and dining room, plus Barrel Room and Hayloft spaces for special events.
as rhubarb, wild rice, honey, lemongrass and Frontenac grapes. This summer, they’re also hosting a weekly farmer’s market on site — Sundays
beerhall, which opened about six months after Pavlak and Loch poured their first few pints.
through Oct. 14 — featuring local vendors.
said. “This is exactly what we pictured.” In the end, the couple created something that’s fairly rare in the enormous Twin Cities taproom scene —
a brewery with a full restaurant that’s open
that’s emerged in the local beer scene
Urban Growler — which was one of about
for lunch and dinner six days a week.
— coming in at 150 breweries in the
two dozen taprooms in the state when it
state at last count, according to
opened — celebrates its fourth anniversary
offer more than light snacks or food truck
The Growler magazine — Pavlak and
this month, and Pavlak and Loch couldn’t
options when it comes to taproom food.
Loch encourage their staff and patrons
be more thrilled.
Despite the enormous competition
to support other microbreweries in the Twin Cities. “The craft-beer community is very unique
“We have no idea how this happened,” Loch said. “It’s surreal.” Their beer is on tap at nearly 100
Of the many breweries in Minnesota, few
Urban Growler, meanwhile, offers a wide assortment of burgers, sandwiches, salads, desserts and even a kids’ menu, complete with table service and their
in that we all kind of support each other,”
restaurants around town and for sale
Foster said. “I’ve heard a couple people say,
in cans at 300 retailers, including their
‘Oh, it’s more competition for you guys.’
signature Cowbell Cream Ale, De-Lovely
horse stable in St. Anthony Park, complete
And it is not that. It is bringing more light
Porter and Midwest IPA, plus one rotating
with a lush beer garden, covered in
to our neighborhood. If there are more
seasonal Plow to Pint brew with custom
colorful flower pots and dotted with red
breweries around us, it’s more of a reason
artwork by Brian McCashin of Red Leaf
fabric umbrellas, which have become the
for people to come and drink in our area.”
Design of Minneapolis.
iconic symbols of this local beer hall.
Indeed, brew fans can hit two or three spots with a trip to the Urban Growler: Right next door sits Bang Brewing Co.’s
Canning — which was always part of the business plan — started about a year ago.
cooler than Deb and I — that we’re a
couple of squares — because this place
And just a mile due west stands Surly
And it’s all happening here at an old
It is — as one patron described it — “an oasis in the middle of an industrial park.”
“I often joke that this place is much
taproom, The Bin, housed in retrofitted
Brewing Co.’s $34 million destination
signature and seasonal brews.
Olivia Volkman-Johnson is a freelance writer who lives in Minneapolis and works as an ice cream maker and cake decorator.
is pretty freaking amazing thanks to the people that are in it and around it,” Pavlak
Minnesota Good Age / August 2018 / 29
CAN’T-MISS CALENDAR AUGUST
Image courtesy of theXYXYXYXY
A COLOURFUL UNIVERSE
→→Meet the “godmother of Swedish fashion” — Gudrun Sjödén, a renowned textile designer known for her boldly feminine collections inspired by nature and Swedish folk motifs — by viewing her original watercolors, textiles, archival materials and more. When: July 26–Oct. 28 Where: American Swedish Institute, Minneapolis Cost: $10 for adults, $7 for ages 62 and older Info: asimn.org
THE MIDWEST SKI OTTERS →→See high-level water skiers perform stunts, including swivel turns, barefooting, freestyle jumping and human pyramids. When: Sunday evenings through August Where: Little Goose Lake, White Bear Lake Cost: FREE Info: skiotter.com. Learn about other ski shows at baldeaglewaterskishows.com and tcriverrats.com.
UPTOWN ART FAIR →→See the work of professional and youth artists, and check out live music, dance 30 / August 2018 / Minnesota Good Age
performances, family-friendly activities and festival-style food and beverages. When: Aug. 3–5 Where: Uptown Minneapolis Cost: FREE Info: uptownartfair.com
TWIN CITIES POLISH FESTIVAL →→Learn about Polish culture and traditions with folk-dance exhibitions, live music, food, beverages, arts and crafts, cultural exhibits and a petting area featuring sheepdogs. When: Aug. 10–12 Where: Old Main Street in Minneapolis Cost: FREE Info: tcpolishfestival.org
IRISH FAIR OF MINNESOTA →→Celebrate all things Irish with multiple stages dedicated to live music and dance plus activities, food and drink. When: Aug. 10–12 Where: Harriet Island, St. Paul Cost: FREE Info: irishfair.com
INDIAFEST →→Organized by the India Association of Minnesota, this annual event includes parades, cultural exhibits, cuisine from local restaurants, a bazaar, dance groups, live Bollywood music, kite flying, chess, cricket, yoga and more.
When: Aug. 18 Where: State Capitol Grounds, St. Paul Cost: FREE Info: iamn.org
WORLD WAR I WEEKEND →→Explore the ways this monumental conflict shaped the world we know today and learn about Minnesota’s role in the war through military reenactments. When: Aug. 18–19 Where: Historic Fort Snelling, St. Paul Cost: Included with site admission of $12 for adults, $10 for seniors/veterans/ military, $6 for ages 5–17, free for ages 4 and younger Info: mnhs.org
JAPANESE OBON FESTIVAL →→Bonsai, martial arts, Ikebana, singing, dancing, drumming, traditional foods and other aspects of Japanese culture will take center stage at this event, ending with a dramatic lantern lighting at dusk. When: Aug. 19 Where: Como Park, St. Paul Cost: $5 for ages 13–64, $3 for ages 3–12 and 65 and older, free for ages 2 and younger Info: comozooconservatory.org
Seeking Peace Of Mind? Visit our website to discover how you can enroll in prearrangement services which will handle every aspect of the process. Find out why we’ve been in business for more than 60 years and have become Minnesota’s leading provider of cremation and funeral services—visit us online at:
Minneapolis Chapel 4343 Nicollet Avenue South
(612) 825-2435 Cremation Society GA NR2 H4.indd 1
4/17/18 2:14 PM
AUG. 23–SEPT. 3
THE MINNESOTA STATE FAIR →→The Great Minnesota Get-Together features 12 days of food on a stick, agricultural and cultural exhibits, parades, live music, entertainment, carnival rides, animals and more. When: Aug. 23–Sept. 3 Where: Minnesota State Fairgrounds, St. Paul Cost: Tickets purchased before the start of the fair cost $11. Otherwise gate admission is $14 for ages 13-64, $12 for age 65 and older and ages 5–12 and free for ages 4 and younger Info: See mnstatefair.org for discounted days for seniors.
Saturday, August 4 Minnehaha Park
Make A Wish MNP 0518 H4.indd 1
5/2/18 3:03/PM Minnesota Good Age / August 2018 31
Brain teasers SUDOKU
WORD SEARCH Culinary Inspiration
ANTIPASTO APERITIF APPETITE CHINESE COCKTAIL EMPANADA EMULSION
GASTRONOMY GAZPACHO HAMBURGER HOLLANDAISE ITALIAN JAPANESE MARINARA
MARINATE MEXICAN PARFAIT RESERVATION RESTAURANT SASHIMI STEAKHOUSE
Break the code to reveal a quote from a famous person. Each letter represents another letter.
P Q T Q A I B U C
D J Q V C
Q F J
WORD SCRAMBLE Complete the following words using each given letter once.
A O J
B U J C
H B S
L V Q U
K I U W
32 / August 2018 / Minnesota Good Age
R O J U
3. ‘Mouth amuser’ K Q V V C
A O F B S N O
N F J Q A J C A
A O J
C B D J A I D J C
Clue: J = E
TRIVIA 1. Pracna on Main
Source: Anthony Bourdain
TRIVIA Dining Out 1. What restaurant, located next to a movie theater in Minneapolis, first opened in 1890 and is considered the oldest in Minnesota? 2. What recent popular noodle has become a staple of many new restaurants in the Twin Cities, including Ichiddo and Tori? 3. What does â€˜amuse-boucheâ€™ mean in French? Sources: onlyinyourstate.com, yelp.com, finedinelove.com
SUDOKU WORD SCRAMBLE Indian, Waiter, Brunch CROSSWORD
ANSWERS Minnesota Good Age / August 2018 / 33
CRYTPOGRAM Sometimes the greatest meals on vacations are the ones you find when Plan A falls through.
1 “__ la Douce” 5 Beat decisively 9 High-80s grade 14 Not nice at all 15 In __: as placed 16 “Spider-Man” trilogy director Sam 17 *ATM user’s code 19 It usually shows AK and HI as insets 20 Subordinate to 21 Newspapers, collectively 23 Lightning-to-thunder interval, e.g. 26 Play with Iago 30 Naval rank: Abbr. 31 Crosses (out) 33 Fearful 34 Start of Act II, say 37 Needs to be submitted by, as a term paper 34 / August 2018 / Minnesota Good Age
38 *Contact sport on skates 40 Garlicky sauce 42 “Fringe on top” carriage of song 43 LIKE THIS CLUE 45 GI’s internet suffix 46 Director Lee 49 Exec’s aircraft 51 Elizabeth Warren or Lisa Murkowski, e.g. 54 Elizabeth Warren or Lisa Murkowski, e.g. 56 Bush 43 successor 57 Diameter halves 60 Permanent place ... and where to find the starts of the answers to starred clues 63 Sch. east of Hartford 64 Grand Ole __ 65 Civil wrong 66 Cake pan trademark 67 Make less difficult 68 Lambs’ moms
1 Ascribe (to) 2 Get control of 3 Classic colorful candies 4 Year in France 5 U.S. Army award 6 Barbecued piece 7 Sch. near the Rio Grande 8 Grand Canyon critter 9 *Forest threat 10 Ones who may stop to help 11 Peru airport abbr. 12 Thurman of movies 13 Taste of a drink 18 Internet address 22 Incoming flight info 24 Ice skater’s jump 25 Heredity units 27 Title for Godiva 28 Actress Lucy 29 “__ to Billie Joe” 32 Hospital supply 34 Sun emanation responsible for the northern lights 35 *Business known for overcharging, in slang 36 Elba of “The Wire” 38 Almond __: candy 39 Mystery writer Gardner 40 Feel sick 41 Suffix with hero 44 Coll. term 46 Hitting bottom, spirits-wise 47 “That’ll be enough” 48 Research funding sources 50 Lake near Reno 52 Refusals 53 Taper off 55 Golden State wine region 57 Coax (out), as a genie 58 Puncture prefix 59 Shock jock Imus 61 Tax form org. 62 Deli bread