The Michigan Medal – My 50 State Medal Pursuit

The story for my Michigan medal starts like a rerun of a television show. It begins with an email notifying me of my win but needs to explain what beer won what award. This story starts just like the story behind my Washinton medal, and this email arrived less than a week after the Washington email.

The competition I entered for Michigan was the 2023 Michigan State Fair Homebrew Competition. 

I entered my Scottish Heavy and Pale Ale, which have done very well in this season’s 2023 Florida competition circuit. So I have no guess which beer won a medal, and I’m also wondering if both didn’t at this point.

I will have to wait 23 days to find out when the awards ceremony take place at the Michigan State Fair.

23 Days and a few Hours Later

Wow! To say this was worth the wait is an understatement—the anticipation to find out what won undoubtedly built. About a week after receiving the email that I had won something, I received scoresheets before the awards ceremony. My American Pale Ale had scored a massive 45 out of 50! I was pretty confident that was the beer that was bringing home a medal,

September 1st final has finally come. Coincidentally, it was all the opening night of my favorite event of the year, Halloween Horror Nights 32, at Universal Studios Orlando. 

There was a stream of the awards, but I still had no idea what I had won between the cellular signal quality, the crowd noise at Halloween Horror Nights, and my ever-decreasing hearing.

At 2 A.M. on September 2nd, I finally came home and could watch the stream (result tables had yet to be published). The American Ale category came up, and my name was read as 1st place for my Pale Ale. With a 45 out of 50, I was optimistic that this is what I won.

But the stream wasn’t over yet. The Best of Show category announcements began, and the trophy was displayed. It started with an honorable mention. Then, the third-place winner. Next was the 2nd place winner, who oddly enough was also named “Matt.” I was ready to close the stream but wanted to hear who the winner was. To my utter astonishment, my name and club, “Brewers Anonymous,” were announced as the 1st place Best of Show for my American Pale Ale!

I was on cloud nine! I was exhausted from opening night but still could not sleep.

There was a slight feeling of guilt for taking Best of Show in a start outside of my home state, but the feeling of winning two Best of Shows in the same year, with the same beer, was far more exciting.

So that’s Michigan. What an experience from beginning to end!


Track the progress of this pursuit here, at the the 50 State Medal Tracker Page.

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