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February 14, 2018 05:05 PM

A Homestead Brew

A hops farm and microbrewery in Valley Springs is all about family. The new business sits on a few acres of land just east of Sioux Falls that has been in the Anderson family since the late 1800s. 

A Homestead Brew may be new to the local beer scene in KELOLAND but its owners, the Andersons, have been on this land in rural Valley Springs for more than 100 years. 

"Many generations later, I'm the fourth. My kids are the fifth and we're on the same plot starting our next venture," Lee Anderson said.

Lee Anderson is the brainchild behind the brew here. Armed with an associates degree in culinary arts, he and his wife Nelleigh Johnson started researching what it takes to start a hops farm. Funny enough, one of the best places to dig in was right in front of them. 

"My great grandfather owned it. It got homesteaded in 1882. They came down from Canada," Anderson said.

After years of his ancestors making a life here east of Sioux Falls near the Iowa and Minnesota borders, Anderson is now trying to capture that nostalgia for heritage and push it forward with his aptly named business. On top of the hops farm, Anderson and his family built this brewery and tap room themselves and use brewing equipment from America. They also added a few personal touches. 

"We had the original claim shack still up there. The house that my grandpa was born in. We got to repurpose all of that barnwood and reinstall it into our tap room," Anderson said. 

From the humble beginnings of the homestead all those many years ago, who could have imagined it would now be on the big stage, in this way, at the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center for Pheasant Fest 2018.

A Homestead Brew is creating an exclusive Pheasantennial Vienna Lager for the event hosted by Pheasants Forever that starts on Friday in Sioux Falls. 

"It makes me feel really good. Truly blessed to be here. Living my dream that a lot of people support and back. I just want to see this thing progress," Anderson said. 

With just eight months into commercial brewing, it seems support is already pouring in. 
Anderson says the brewery's goal is to make 480 barrels of beer in 2018. He plans on getting back into the hops field in 30 days to start getting this year's crop ready.

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