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Madison Hops Museum Brings Heritage and Community Together

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Madison Hopps Museum

The Hops Museum in Madison just held its grand opening in May with its first exhibit on the Hess Family Cooperage and its contribution to Beer Making in Madison.

The exhibit is based on a book entitled Roll out the Barrels, written by Gary Hess, the grandson of the company’s founding father. The exhibition currently consists of photographs, acting as a storyboard for the interactive exhibit yet to come.

Co-founder and the Director of Exhibits for the Hops Museum, Michelle Morrison, says that she and the other founders hope that the museum will be a both a gathering place for the community and a place where they can contribute to the exhibits as well. 

What the museum may currently lack in artifacts, it more than makes up for in enthusiasm.

"It's all these pieces just fitting together and I think it's fantastic to see that we've got this resurgence. It feels like we're hearkening back to our [collective] heritage. It's been all about creating connections with different members of the community and building from there," says Morrison.

Gianofer Fields studies material culture at UW-Madison and is the curator of "Radio Chipstone" - a project funded by the Chipstone Foundation, a decorative arts foundation whose mission is preserving and interpreting their collection, as well as stimulating research and education in the decorative arts.