Longmont, Colorado is home to the Left Hand Brewing Company and Oskar Blues Brewery, both well-known to craft beer drinkers. The recent flooding in Colorado, which has left 4 dead and 172 missing as of Saturday morning, has also caused Governor John Hickenlooper to evacuate thousands from Longmont. (Incidentally, Hickenlooper is one of the founders of Wynkoop Brewing Company in Denver)
The breweries, via their Facebook pages and Twitter, have been keeping interested beer drinkers updated on their status.
The waters reached Left Hand, which is near St. Vrain Creek, flooding their hop garden and loading docks. Before heeding the call for evacuation, the employees “sandbagged” the brewery with bags of malt. Today, they reported that their power was off and they were still in an evacuation zone, but the floodwaters were receding. They plan to resume operations as soon as they can clean up and their water source is deemed safe.
Oscar Blues, on a higher patch of ground, fared better. Although there was some flooding just a few blocks from their brewery, they stayed high and dry and are open today. The brewery is spearheading a flood relief fund to help those — including some of their employees — who lost everything in the flood. You can get details of their efforts on their Facebook page.
The flooding might not be over, as the Weather Channel gives Longmont a 30% chance of rain today, increasing to 40% tonight and a 60% chance of rain tomorrow.