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Hopshire Farm & Brewery in Tompkins County is expanding

By Eric Reinhardt

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Hopshire Farm & Brewery in the village of Freeville in Tompkins County is implementing an expansion project that will add 2,500 square feet of space in two phases. The business is located at 1771 Dryden Road in Freeville, which is part of the town of Dryden. Photo credit: Tompkins County Area Development.

FREEVILLE — Hopshire Farm & Brewery in the village of Freeville in Tompkins County is implementing an expansion project that will add 2,500 square feet of space in two phases. The company is located at 1771 Dryden Road in Freeville, which is part of the town of Dryden.

Hopshire Farm & Brewery opened in May 2013 and is a family-owned business that Randy Lacey and Diane Gerhart operate, according to a news release issued Oct. 28.

Phase 1 of the project involves a 1,200-square-foot, 100-person community-event space to accommodate larger gatherings.

The business says it expects to complete the first phase at the beginning of 2017.

Plans for Phase 2 include a 1,300-square-foot addition that will expand the brewing and storage area, allowing the brewery to double production.

Hopshire Farm & Brewery is funding the expansion through a grant that Empire State Development awarded after it submitted a New York State consolidated-funding application (CFA).

Under the terms of the grant award, Hopshire Farm & Brewery will receive funding for 20 percent of the project cost once it meets “several” requirements, it said.

The conditions include completing the project. In addition, 30 percent of the contractors used during construction must be certified as a minority/women owned business enterprise (M/WBE).

Hopshire Farm & Brewery must also create two permanent jobs in the next three years, according to its release.

It’s one of only three local businesses in Tompkins County selected in 2016 for a grant from Empire State Development, the company said.

Hopshire’s owners decided an expansion would benefit the business, citing a “thriving customer base and an increasing demand for event space.”

The business produces craft beers that it serves in its tasting room and sells locally. Hopshire Farm & Brewery also contends that it has become a “popular gathering space,” hosting Friday night music, food and beer pairings, Wednesday yoga, fundraisers, and private events such as birthday and graduation parties.

The new event space will provide a venue for more of these kinds of activities, Hopshire says. Hopshire’s owners see the expansion as a “response to what their customers and the community want.”

By expanding, they hope to reach more of the community while continuing to promote a “family-friendly environment”; sponsor public events; and “encourage” community participation in the brewery through activities such as the production of its Cohoperation beer, which uses donated hops from local growers in the brewing process, according to the release.

Contact Reinhardt at ereinhardt@cnybj.com

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