Brewery honors local legends

Grain Belt Premium promotes people and things that make Minnesota different

Mar 25, 2003 - August Schell Brewing Co. has launched a "Here's to Local Heroes" campaign to promote Grain Belt Premium, the popular beer brand it recently acquired.


The advertisements highlight the beer's venerable status while pointing out people, places and things that — for better or worse — make Minnesota different from the rest of the nation. Visitors to may vote for one of 10 "state legends."

These include retired wrestler Baron von Raschke, known in his prime as "The Claw," as well as Wally the Beerman, well known for crying out "Heeeyy, cold beer!" at professional sporting events.

Other nominees include the Jucy Lucy hamburger served at Matt's Bar in Minneapolis; local band The Suburbs; Nye's Polonaise Room, a polka bar; World's Best Donuts, a shop known for The Skizzle; walleye they caught in Lake Mille Lacs and put on display at intersection of 18 and 169; Viva and Jerry, the local king and queen of cable access; the St. Paul Saints mascot, a pig; and "a guy named Tim."

Tim is shown on the site holding a Grain Belt and described as "a guy from Minneapolis who really really really likes Premium." Derek Bitter, a write at the advertising agency that created the campaign, said Tim was not invented by the agency. "We're pretty sure Tim just nominated himself," said Bitter.

Schell became the largest brewer in the state when it acquired the Grain Belt brand last summer in the liquidation of St. Paul-based Minnesota Brewing Co. Schell is spending $1 million this year to market the brand.

Radio spots that began last week direct listeners to the web site, where they can vote for their favorite local legend. The top vote-getter will be highlighted on the site at the end of April as the Premium Local Legend.

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