Alexander Homestead is currently bursting to life with spring blooms and looking pristinely event ready, but it has been a while since the property was full of people due to Covid-19. I don’t know if anyone expected for 2020 to be what it is, but today I thought it might be fun to reflect on AH’s last event and share all about Luke Bryan’s Beer Launch! But before we dive into the behind the scenes and break down of the event, I need you to bear with me for a second, and join me in a reminisce over my deep fangirl for LB.
My love of country music began because of a guy I had a major crush on during college. Of course it did. (Side note: If you are wondering, I got friend zoned.) The first Luke Bryan song I ever heard was “Drunk on You” and I remember immediately hopping in my car, driving to Walmart and buying the album “Tailgates and Tanlines.” It didn’t leave my car’s cd player that summer and every time he was playing a show in my home state or in the surrounding states for the next few years, I was there. I’m not the only LB fan at AH. When a couple of us found out that AH was being pursued as the ideal venue for Luke Bryan’s Beer Launch Party, well I just can’t quite capture for you the squeals and sounds coming from our offices.
We had less than a month’s notice to plan, and while this was quite a different event from AH’s normal jam, our structure made planning, managing, and executing such an event smooth, seamless, and fun!
Luke Bryan collaborated with Constellation Brands, the team that puts out Corona, Modelo, and other popular beer, wine, and spirit brands to create Two Lane American Golden Lager. Two Lane is described as a “clean, crisp lager brewed with American grown barley and water from the Blue Ridge mountains” that is “easy sipping.” Available only in this pocket of the country to start, Luke Bryan & Constellation were throwing a Launch Party in Nashville & Charlotte to promote Two Lane..
Planning the Charlotte event with Constellation and the other teams involved included creating a barn layout for event set up, optimizing use of the property for the best party experience, selecting a menu, discussing the ways AH could meet the needs of Luke and his team, and so much more. Load in for the Beer Launch began early the day prior and it was exciting to be a part of. Fabrication teams came to unload, build, and install pallet walls, Two Lane décor & merch, an augmented reality photo booth, and an awesome welcome sign and guitar swing among other things.
We transformed the bridal suite into Luke’s green room, the barn’s atrium into a “mancave,” and the garden into a backyard hangout of cornhole, lawn games, and multiple fire pits. While Luke’s team set up the stage and worked on sound check, the bar got fully stocked with Two Lane. Beer Launch Day pre-event was about finishing touches, Luke’s band arriving for additional sound check, prepping staff, and tapping those kegs to get the beer flowing!
It was only a matter of time until the gates opened and AH became filled with beer industry folks and guests enjoying quality apps and snacks, lawn games near the fire pit, and of course beer as we awaited Luke’s arrival. When Luke Bryan did arrive, he spent some time in interviews with local media, enjoyed time with some guests over Two Lane in the “man cave,” and finally took the stage for an intimate, laid back acoustic set where he performed some newer hits like “What Makes You Country,” “What She Wants Tonight, “ and of course “Drink a Beer.” A presentation and auction by Luke and his nonprofit, the Brett Boyer foundation closed the event, along with some great AH BBQ.
Photo Credit: JCM Photography
The Beer Launch was a blast. Our staff had so many great conversations with guests, and we got to hang out with our friends Jenny & Joe at JCM Photography. We also got to make some new friends with the crew at Constellation and share in the victory of a successful event with all the teams. I had a moment where I looked around the room and was struck by the energy and excitement of all involved and attended, and proud of our staff who worked so hard on this event. We wouldn’t have changed a thing on how the event turned out and I wouldn’t have wanted to do it with any other management team.
I also loved seeing how versatile AH is as an event space. It can be filled flowers and candles, lace and forever love as it is most of the time. But just as fitting is cornhole and beer, flannel and country music. Our motto at AH is “Customize your experience with all the stress” and whether wedding or other event, it remains true.
And now I sit on my deck alone, craving the energy of gathering together again. And yes, I’ve got a cold Two Lane in hand as I finish writing this. It’s pretty damn special that every time I get to pick up a can of this beer, I have an awesome memory attached to it. Because “every two lane brings you home.”