Kricker Innovation Hub to host regional craft beer panelists virtually

Staff report

PORTSMOUTH — The Shawnee State University Kricker Innovation Hub will host “The Future of Craft Beer in Southeastern Ohio” at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 22 as part of its monthly virtual speaker series.

The event will host a panel discussion from regional craft beer experts of Jackie O’s (Athens, Ohio), the Portsmouth Brewing Company (Portsmouth, Ohio), and the Morning Dew Hop Farm (Albany, Ohio) as well as feature a Q&A session to give participants and panelists the opportunity to network.

“We are very excited to be hosting this event,” said Derrick Parker, Program Coordinator of the Kricker Innovation Hub. “With the pandemic and upcoming renovations to the Hub, our building has been closed to the public, but we’ve been very active. We’ve been busy planning interactive virtual events that will really bring new and exciting perspectives to our community”

Focusing on craft beer businesses for this event, the Hub is featuring the industry’s role in small communities across the nation, state, and even Southeastern Ohio. Currently, there are 345 breweries in Ohio and another 72 are in planning stages. In 2019, the Ohio Craft Brewer’s Association estimated that Ohio’s craft breweries had an economic impact of almost a billion dollars. These breweries produce 1.3 million barrels of beer per year (#4th in the nation) while supporting over 8,300 jobs across the state.

“For decades, large corporate macro-breweries dominated the beer industry,” said Parker. “But in the 21st century, all that changed. Small local breweries began

producing craft beer – and a ton of it. They created new, innovative brewing techniques, hired local workers, stimulated local economies, and convinced consumers to turn away from large corporate breweries – and boring bland beer – for more flavorful small batch IPAs, stouts, ales, and more. That trend has even held up here in Southeastern Ohio.”

The Kricker Innovation Hub will host this “The Future of Craft Beer in Southeastern Ohio” through AirMeet, an immersive event platform that allows participants to be involved with panelists and other attendees through polls, virtual tables, and other engaging activities. Registration for the event is available on the Shawnee State University Kricker Innovation Hub Facebook page. To learn more about the services offered by the Kricker Innovation Hub, visit

Staff report