LEWISBURG — After several years of work and planning, Preble County resident Dick Ewing and his son Adam finally saw a dream begin to come to fruition on Wednesday, Aug. 18, when an official groundbreaking was held for the Lost Railroad Brewhaus.
Located at 450 Western Avenue in the Village of Lewisburg, the 10,200 square foot, $2.4 million facility will house a craft brewery, as well as a restaurant which will seat approximately 85 people. There will also be a porch outside for additional seating, weather permitting.
“As many of you know this has been a long time coming and it’s a joyous event for a lot of people,” Chris Meyers of EB Solutions said to welcome everyone to the groundbreaking. “Much of this celebration today has to do with thanking so many people, and as we move along, I will try to make sure that we get all the people thanked, but I’m sure a lot of you had a lot more to do with it that we don’t know.”
Funding for the project came from Q2 Financial Capital as a senior partner, from the Warren County Port Authority, Property Assessed Clean Energy financing, Preble County Development Partnership Revolving Loan Funds, private capital from the project partners and various tax exemptions from the Village of Lewisburg, according to Meyers.
Developers hope to have the project complete in eight months to a year.
“The restaurant and bar will have a lot of handmade furniture which Dick [Ewing] has been working on for months and months. That’s one of the ways he’s been taking out his frustration about this whole thing taking so long. So there’s going to be a lot of some very cool furniture,” Meyers said.
“It’s taken about six years to get all of this stuff taken care of, so it’s been a long road, but we’re finally here and things are progressing well,” Ewing said in thanking everyone who helped make the brewery a reality.
“Thank you to the Ewing family for choosing Lewisburg, Ohio to fulfill your dream of opening a brew pub,” Lewisburg Mayor Marsha Jones said. “We are grateful for your persistence to bring Lost Railroad Brew Haus to our village. Our community looks forward to spending time with family and friends in this newly to-be-created destination spot. Your vision aligns with Lewisburg’s mission statement to develop a thriving community, to lead by example and present opportunities for others to contribute to a safe, healthy, and desirable place to live, work, play and visit. The Village of Lewisburg wishes you much success.”
Meyers recognized the work of the Dayton Chamber of Commerce, the Lewisburg Chamber of Commerce, the Preble County Chamber of Commerce, Preble County Commissioners, and Lewisburg’s administrative group, as well as Preble County Development Partnership Economic Development Director Brenda Latanza for her work in helping the Ewings throughout the past six years.
Village Administrator Jeff Sewert unveiled a street sign for Western Avenue, saying the village wanted everyone to know where Lost Railroad Brewhaus was located.
“If you look in the dictionary about perseverance, that’s Dick Ewing,” Sewert said. “That’s the bottom line, to get this project to come to fruition. So, on behalf of the village of Lewisburg, I just want to say thank you, sir.”
Todd Smith from EB Solutions, general contractor for the project who grew up in Englewood, said it was “really fun” to see the project get under way.
“It’ll be great for the area. It’ll be a fantastic place to come and socialize and make family memories and everything else, so I’m just glad and grateful to be part of it and appreciate the opportunity to work with everybody,” he said.
Dick Ewing said the project started as an idea about six years ago.
“We tried a couple of locations, and it didn’t work,” he said. After speaking to Sewert about property which was available, Ewing said the group was able to purchase the current property.
“This was something that I thought about doing, and then my son decided, ‘well, I’m going to try to make beer,’ so he was making beer and it really worked out well and just one thing led to another and here we are today,” he said.
Reach Eddie Mowen Jr. at 937-683-4061 and follow on Twitter @emowenjr