Many made ‘Down The River’ a hit

To the Editor:

It is said that “many hands make light work” and this is confirmed by the success of the fourth annual Down The River, Down A Beer on Aug. 12, at Lock 9 Park. For example, we had huge community support in the form of sponsorship, both in financial contributions or in services.

Thanks to the Brewery Sponsor: Unity National Bank, Barrel Sponsors: French Oil Mill Machinery Co., Mainstreet Piqua Inc., Piqua Arts Council, Protecting Our WaterWays (POWW), McColloch Baker, WPTW 98.1 and Keg Sponsors: Edison State Community College, Polysource Inc., Atlantis Sportswear, Crayex Corp., Koverman Staley Dickerson Insurance Agency and Case Sponsors: Miami Valley Centre Mall, Miami Valley Steel Inc., Palmer Bolt and Supply, Piqua Beverage Center, PSC Crane and Rigging, Scott Steel Inc., Hemm’s Glass, Mark Reedy & Spencer Peltier Thrivent Financial, and Six Pack Sponsors: Piqua Country Club, P&R Specialty, Parker’s Mobility Solutions, and Schirbyz Party Rental.

Special thanks to the guys at French Oil Mill Machinery Co., Cy Pleiman and his crew; Joe Davis, Dan Flaute, Josh Drees and Tom Wion for placing the River Fire Rings in the Great Miami River. Once again, the river fire rings created a very dramatic end to the event.

Thanks to all the great local food vendors. Thanks to Chef James and Jeff Cotner from Mulligan’s Pub for delicious food and to Tom Kiser of TK’s BBQ-N-Fixins. Thanks to WPTW, Chuck Black and Rick Muzzy for promotion of the event. Thanks to Joe Laber for putting up with Jeff Lange and me on morning radio interviews and for emceeing for the event. Thank you for providing music throughout the beer tasting and for the river fire rings.

Thanks to Mark Cantwil for providing engaging songs. It was wonderful to have a local musician for live entertainment.

Thanks to Mary Beth Barhorst, Readmore’s Hallmark and Piqua Beverage Supply, The Cellar, Karoc Marathon/Corner Deli, and Miami Valley Wine and Spirits for being ticket sellers. A special thank you to MaryBeth at Readmore Hallmark for supplying equipment for the event, too.

Thanks to the guys and ladies from the Parks Dept for prepping Lock 9 Park and bringing in extra cans and bins, tables, helping string lights etc. and the Piqua Fire Department for safety in conjunction with River Fire Rings event. Special thanks to Bob Bowman and Ben Gover along with summer help/seasonal employees.

Thanks to all the businesses in Miami, Shelby, Montgomery and Darke counties for handing out flyers, hanging posters and selling tickets.

Thanks to the city commissioners for approving the use of Lock 9 Park to get folks out to see and enjoy our wonderful river and park system up close and personal. Thanks to the Miami Conservancy District for their approval as well.

Thanks to all of our volunteers; beer servers, river volunteers, event prep, and clean up, it could not have happened without ALL of you. There are folks who do multiple shifts; Mary Ellen Lange, Maria and Brad Bubp, Bill Carter, Pat Middleton, Tiffany and Ken Shepard, Bernadine Greenwood, Tracey and Ralph Quinter.

I would be remiss, if I did not say thanks to my wife, Cheryl, for all of her help in so many ways, especially in assisting with the beer-tasting research. It is a tough job, but someone had to do it.

Finally, a huge special thank you to members of the planning committee and event site volunteers: Lorna Swisher of Mainstreet Piqua, Jordan Knepper of Piqua Arts Council, Chris Schmiesing from the City of Piqua, as well as Brittany Van Horn, Jeff Lange from POWW and Starr Gephart, who provided Promotion and Social Media.

Down The River, Down A Beer was a fabulous event full of fellowship, food, recreation and some excellent beer. I think it further demonstrates that Piqua is a wonderful place to live, work and play. Thank you to all who attended. I heard nothing but positive comments and I think everyone had a blast.

With so many people to thank, it is apparent that this was a total community event, and without so much support it could never have happened. Hoping I did not miss anyone, if so, please accept my apologies.

Thanks, again. Cheers.

— Jim Burkhardt, event chair