During prohibition, the Peterson family trekked thousands of miles across the country to find a new home for one-of-kind craft beer… just kidding, we’re not that cool.
Meadowlark’s creation came about like any other American dream, it was just that, a dream. Our founder, Travis, an avid craft beer “researcher”, moved home to Sidney, Montana in 2010 to help with the other family business Sidney Red-E-Mix, which is when the real encouragement from his parents came into play. Sidney, a small town in Eastern Montana was ready for some locally made beer. As with the rest of the country, Sidneyites, Sidneyers, the people of Sidney, were becoming more aware of and thirsty for craft beer. Travis and family saw this new “thirst” very inline with their new goals and dreams, and so the journey began.
THE PUBLIC HOUSE
Remodeling and construction on Meadowlark Public House and Brewing began in the very cold winter of 2012. We patiently waited in sub zero weather for the Christian bookstore (yes, a Christian bookstore was the previous tenant of our now, brew house) to close and move their holy texts. While we waited, we kept ourselves busy by buying the building next door, which now houses the bar area and kitchen.
It only took about 18 months from start to finish, but as the months rolled by more pieces of the puzzle fell into to place and finally we were ready to open the doors. The original plan was to have a small tap room for sampling with a few snacks but it became one of the most exciting new restaurants in Montana. Ironically the brewery took the longest to complete but it rolled out its first ½ barrel of beer to the waiting public a couple of months after the pub opened.
We are centrally located in the town, and love it. We love that our building has history and soul in its bones. We opened our public house in May of 2014, and our first three beers made their debut August 2014.
It all began with a dream and love of craft everything, but especially beer.
or “What does that bird have to do with beer?”
Well…not much to do with beer really, but we like to find philosophies in just about everything… so here goes our birdie wisdom….The Western Meadowlark or sturnella neglecta has long been an iconic presence of the plains of North America. So much so that five other states besides Montana have selected the Western Meadowlark for representation as the state bird (copycats).
Our founder, Travis, always had a special place in his heart for the Meadowlark. No other creature of the prairie announces the ending of the bitter cold and the renewal of spring like the commanding trill of Meadowlark from its dominant perch atop a fence post. The Meadowlark is not particularly flashy but it is well know throughout the Midwest despite its humble origins. Meadowlark Brewing shares similar characteristics of its feathered namesake. Our beers will be original and consistent but, every once in a while, will surprise you.
WHO RUNS THIS PLACE?
About Our Founder– Travis Peterson, a local of Sidney Montana, loves beer.
Food and beer, beer and food. They’ve always gone together and Travis had a dream of helping people experience the beauty in food and beer pairings. Neither food, nor beer has to be complicated or contrived its all about experience and opening your mind to all the possibilities beer can create.
Driving his wife crazy at every single brewery, in every single town they lived, stopped in, thought about stopping in… you know that drill. All the “what ifs” and “we shoulds” went on for years until dreams, of what was always to be named “Meadowlark” came to fruition.
Travis, a civil engineer, pursued a career working on bridge projects in both CA and WA post graduation from Gonzaga University. He has three children, a loving wife, and feels pretty darn lucky.
Meadowlark Public House New Ownership
If you are reading this than you probably want to hear why we are stepping down from the restaurant side of the Meadowlark operation. The short answer is because we want to focus on our passion, and that is brewing great beer. We have enjoyed and learned a lot in the last year about what it takes to run a full scale restaurant and coffee shop. But one we thing we learned was running a restaurant requires a commitment that has to be backed by unwavering passion. We loved bringing a new element to Eastern Montana. We challenged the way coffee, food, beer and atmosphere was presented in Sidney. We recognized though, that the real drive and fun for us always revolved more around the beer. When the opportunity presented itself to be able to take all the focus and time we have spent with the pub to be redirected to just the brewery, we couldn’t pass it up. The dream started with a brewery and we are pleased to continue that dream and spread Meadowlark Brewing beer even farther. Help us to welcome the new owners Angie and Aaron Pelton of the Six Shooters team in continuing what we started at Meadowlark Public House. They love what we have done and promise to keep your favorites coming at you.
And don’t worry you’ll still see us around the pub. After all the pub is our first stop for our beer and our favorite hangout too!
About Our Brewer
Tim Schnars II- You may believe that you, a craft beer LOVER, thinks highly of a well made, diverse beer. Then, you’d meet Tim and realize you are merely “acquaintances” with craft beer, in comparison. Not that it’s a competition. But you’d lose. Sorry.
His passion for what he calls “ the most diverse and sophisticated beverage on the planet” is to him, a spiritual matter. He thrives on the simplicity of beer’s ingredients and that anything is possible with these ingredients that he so respects. Its his life metaphor, really. After all, Tim often can be found speaking of beer as a historical icon and a main driving force behind the rise of the culture of civilizations world wide. Beer, in Tim’s world (which we are happy to live in) represents hope and possibility.
We are lucky to have this hard working, beer thirsty man working with us and traveling from his childhood home of Erie, PA. Tim is the previous Assistant Brewer for the Erie Brewing Co., with additional collaborations with The Brewerie at Union Station as well as Lavery Brewing. Prior to his brewing career, he pursued a career in computer animation with post secondary certification in Advertising and Design.