The craft beer industry is building more of a presence in Boone County. Moontown Brewing Co. plans to open its first brewpub in what was the gymnasium of the former Whitestown High School and Lafayette-based People’s Brewing Co. will open a brewery and eatery in Lebanon.

Whitestown says renovations to the vacant space will begin over the winter and Moontown Co-Owner Pete Mattingly hopes to open the brewery next summer. The town says the brewery owners will make an investment of about $1 million for renovations and plan to preserve the history of the building, which was built in the early 1900s.

"It’s just such a terrific space," said Pete Mattingly, "It has so much potential and we’re very excited to see what it will evolve into."

Meanwhile, in Lebanon, People’s Brewing Co. plans to open a 6,000 square-foot brewery this fall, which will produce small batch recipes. The facility will also include a restaurant area that can seat approximately 140 patrons.

PBC Partner Brett Vander Plaats says the city helped bring the brewery to Lebanon. "We had been considering Lebanon for a while as we tried to find the right location. Between receiving postcards, letters, & emails from the Boone County EDC, repeatedly running into Mayor Gentry at different beer events, and also Ben Worrell from the EDC helping us scout locations and make connections that helped us get to this point. We have been really been made to feel like part of the community already."

The two brewing companies are not the first to set foot in Boone County. Earlier this year, Richmond-based Noble Order Brewing Co. opened a taproom in Zionsville.

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