MADRAS, OR -- Madras officials hope the city will be the next big beer destination in Oregon. Community Development Director Nick Snead says a new incentive package and marketing materials are now being used to attract a brewery or brew pub to downtown Madras. "It’s one of the last communities in Oregon to not have a brewery; we have a lot of farm to table or farm to tap opportunities here that are unique to Madras, even in Central Oregon. And, the Madras Redevelopment Commission (MRC) would like to provide some assistance to whoever is selected to open the brewery or brewpub in Madras." He says providing an incentive to prospective businesses is fairly unique, "In fact, one of our consultants told me he’s not aware of any city in the United States that’s recruited a brewery like this." Snead says the actual dollar amount of the incentive package hasn't been determined, since it isn't yet known whether an existing facility will be used, or new construction is needed.
The MRC is working this week to solidify a strategy for the selection process. Snead tells KBND News they are "Making sure that we select a really good brewery or brewpub that has the ability to pull off a project and operate that brewery or brewpub sustainably, that’s going to open up a business in our downtown that’ll be family-friendly, welcoming, serve great food and beer and really create a memorable experience."
Snead says consultants are working with the city to market the region to prospective businesses, including creation of the new Brew It Madras
website, which promotes things like the area’s good drinking water. "What Earth2O
bottles and sells in stores and supermarkets across the state and region and otherwise comes out of our tap here. It’s already used in the distilling industry with great success." He believes it's time Madras made a name for itself in the industry, "Quite honestly, Bend and Redmond are getting a lot of interest from the brewing industry. If not there, then it tends to be in the Portland-metro [area] or along I-5 and I-84." He hopes to have a brewery chosen and working with the city by July.