From the moment the building was purchased from a family member in September 2018, the dream behind Flood Zone Brewery and Marketplace was a family affair.
Whether family by blood or by close friendships, a dream will be fulfilled for those involved when the Union Bridge business opens at noon Saturday, Feb. 29, at 50 N. Main St.
The building, owned by Jerry and Beth Stambaugh, will house the brewery on one side and a marketplace and small eatery called The Food Spot on the other.
Kristi Waybright manages the day-to-day operations of the brewery while her husband, Keith Waybright, crafts the beer. He said he got started brewing his own beer when his wife gave him a home brew kit for Christmas one year.
“I enjoyed the fact I could make my own beer and have friends over to be taste testers," he said. "It turned out that I was making some pretty good beer.”
He’d been working as a pro brewer when he heard the Stambaughs were opening a brewery. He wanted in.
There will be nine brews on tap with “something for everyone, even if you’re not a full-blown craft beer person.” The lineup will include his version of a hard seltzer with a flavor of the month.
Waybright readily admits he has a go-to beer. “The beer I would recommend would have to be the Green Bell Chilies pale ale," he said. "This beer is brewed with a fairly new hop that hit the market a few years ago. And the flavors and aromas are melon, papaya, and then you get a faint hint of green pepper.”
He added, “I know that sounds as though those flavors wouldn’t mix, but surprisingly it’s very pleasant.”
The Food Spot, meanwhile, is owned and operated by the Stambaughs. The menu includes nachos, flatbread pizza, sliders and soft pretzels, as well as an assortment of beverages.
The marketplace includes two shops that sell a variety of hand-crafted items.
Local business owner Lucy Staley of Lucy’s Little Red Wagon in Union Bridge has sold produce in the parking lot of Flood Zone since 2018. When the opportunity for a spot inside the building came up, she saw it as an opportunity to expand, adding a variety of products, including meats, cheeses and eggs. She will also stock a variety of canned goods and a gift section with rotating inventory.
“I’ll also have a small ‘gift’ section with fun different items. You’ll never know what you’re going to find each time you come!” she said.
In addition to the offerings, special orders are filled upon request. For more information, visit https://www.facebook.com/lucyslittleredwagon/.
Primitive Folk Art by Janie Dell is owned by the Carroll County resident for which the business is named. She has been painting and doing craft shows, as well as the Carroll County Farmers Market, off and on for 30 years. Dell designs and hand-crafts all merchandise. The merchandise is rotated according to the season, with standard primitives mixed in.
For Dell, the opening of the marketplace was the answer to her prayers. The Flood Zone is “close to home, working with people I like and respect, and I won’t have to lug stuff in and out of markets setting up tents and tables every show," she said. She can be contacted by email at email@example.com.
The Stambaughs are grateful for the tireless efforts of friends, family, and the talents of a network of employees and vendors of the Magstone Construction Company.
A lot of work went into their pursuit of this dream, but Beth said, “None of this would have transpired without the positive enthusiasm of our network of family, friends and employees. All of which have encouraged us on a daily basis. We just hope it turns out as good as we all hope!” Jerry agreed.
For more information on Flood Zone Brewery and Marketplace, visit https://www.floodzonebrewery.com/.
I am always looking for West Carroll events. If you have upcoming events you’d like to see written about in my column, send me an email!
Gabrielle Schoeffield covers Taneytown, Union Bridge, New Windsor and surrounding areas. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.