Susquehanna Brewing Co. became a stop on one of the most historic cross-country road trips
PITTSTON — He came. He saw. He tasted.
Todd Ruggere, founder of the USA Pour Tour, stopped at the Susquehanna Brewing Co. May 16 and was welcomed by a crowd of about 30 people. Ruggere was in town to sample some brew and check Pennsylvania off his list as he travels the country raising money for cancer research.
“I’m wicked impressed by this place,” Ruggere said of the brewery. “The beer is good. Real good. This place is awesome.”
The people in attendance were awesome, too. Between donations, raffle baskets, a 50/50 and a portion of gift shop sales, SBC and Ruggere raised about $1,000. Mallory Nobile, marketing and community relations coordinator for Susquehanna Brewing Co. said together, Ruggere and the brewing company decided to donate the money to Penn State’s Thon.
“Fred Maier is one of the owners, and he’s a Penn State grad. He said that Thon does a lot for pediatric cancer,” Nobile said. “We thought it was a good match. We wanted to see the money go somewhere in Pennsylvania.”
Nobile said the day was a lot of fun — drawing a fun-spirited crowd to the event.
Heather Loftus, Pittston, said she’s a regular at the brewery, but it was Ruggere’s visit that prompted her to go on Saturday.
“I’m here for two reasons. Their new beer, Hopcellerator and because of why he’s doing what he’s doing. When (cancer) hits home you want to do as much as you can to help,” Loftus said.
Loftus brought her stepfather, Tab Hunter. Hunter, although he said he enjoyed himself thought his invitation was of the last-minute kind.
“I took her because she had no one else to go with,” he said with a laugh. “All of her friends are probably hungover.”
“You’re probably right,” Loftus said in reply.
Jane Martin, Duryea, and Joy Missett, Exeter, were two more attendees at the Pour Tour.
“It’s really special that Todd decided to come here,” Missett said. “He picked the Susquehanna Brewery as his one stop in Pennsylvania. It’s the perfect fit because they give back so much to the community.”
Ruggere was wrapping up a three-state leg. He said he usually travels alone, but his dad, Bob Ruggere, came along to Ohio, Kentucky and Pennsylvania.
Mom and Dad are behind their son 100 percent, but when Todd first came up with the idea, “I thought he was crazy. Crazy,” Bob Ruggere said. “But we told him if he needed support we’d back him up. As long as he could do it safely, we’d be there for him. It’s a great cause that he’s doing it for. Everyone knows someone with cancer. Everyone knows someone.”
Ruggere began his adventure with the idea to have one beer in every city in Massachusetts and Connecticut. Now, he’s drinking one in every state.
So after stocking up on a few cases of beer, 14 cases to be exact. The father and son duo headed back to Massachusetts. They’re always careful, never risking a DWI, but sometimes police are just drawn to the “beer mobile.”
“Yeah, I was pulled over by a cop in Connecticut,” Todd Ruggere said. “He wanted to know what bar I’d be going to in Manchester. He wanted to know where I was having my beer.”
Ruggere let that cop know he’d stop at Shea’s American Bar and Grill.