HAPPY BELGIAN NATIONAL DAY!

Belgian National Day (Dutch: Belgische nationale feestdag; French: Fête nationale belge; German: Belgischer Nationalfeiertag) is the National Day of Belgium celebrated on 21 July each year. It is one of twelve public holidays in Belgium.

The festival’s establishment dates to a law of 27 May 1890 and commemorates an event on 21 July 1831 in which Leopold of Saxe-Cobourg swore allegiance to the new Belgian constitution, thus becoming the first “King of the Belgians“. The king’s vow marked the start of the independent state of Belgium under a constitutional monarchy and parliament… READ MORE

By Belgian Beer Journal Posted in Updates

3rd Annual NAMUR BEER FESTIVAL – July 11-13, 2014

The 3rd annual NAMUR BEER FESTIVAL is being held this weekend! There will be 40 breweries (large and small), with 150 beers to try and discover, and there will also be some very nice food discoveries as well…

This year, all beers awarded at the Best Belgian Beer of Wallonia contest will be available during this three-day festival. All are welcome- Invite your friends! For more info, click on the picture below or visit: http://www.namurcapitaledelabiere.be/en

   

By Belgian Beer Journal Posted in Updates

HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY AMERICA!

We are very BLESSED and grateful for the freedoms we still enjoy here in the United States. When we thought of the word “FREEDOM” and wished to articulate what it meant, we found a wonderful essay written by a young woman by the name of Brandi Anderson at Freedom Alliance’s website that says it very well.

At the time of writing, Brandi was an 8th grade student at Warner Christian Academy in South Daytona Beach, Florida, and was the winner of the AMVETS Post 911’s “What Freedom Means to Me” Essay Contest. She and her family were guests of Freedom Alliance at the Hannity Freedom Concert in Orlando, Florida, in August 2010.

Brandi’s father, Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Mike Anderson, was killed by enemy fire while serving in Iraq in 2004. Her father was the inspiration behind the essay.

FREEDOM: WHAT IT MEANS TO ME
by Brandi Anderson

Free-dom (free-dem) n. 1. The state or quality of being free; a) exemption or liberation from the control of some other person or arbitrary power; liberty; independence b) being able to act, move, use etc. without hindrance or restraint, confinement or repression.

Freedom. What a beautiful word. A gift endowed upon us. Our birthright as an American citizen. Freedom has a very special meaning to me. I know what the price of freedom is. It does not come without a very high cost. Every man, woman, and child who lies their head down each night in peace, does so because some other American, at some time, layed down their life for them. I know this because I lost my dad in Iraq on May 2nd, 2004. He was a Navy Seabee sent there to help rebuild a country. He was killed, along with six of his fellow comrades when their camp was mortared. I will never forget the day that the Naval Chief and Chaplain showed up at my front door. I was only seven at the time but the words about to be uttered would change my life forever. The chief saluted my mom and myself, “The United States of America regrets to inform you…” My mom started to cry. I knew something very bad had happened. I was right.

So much tyranny has been fought against through the years. From our WWI warriors to the young soldiers of WWII, sent overseas to save us from an inconceivable evil. They are truly ‘The Greatest Generation.’ Sadly we watch as so many of them depart us each day. Years later the Vietnam generation heeded their nation’s command. On September 11th, 2001 our beloved nation was attacked. Today we continue to fight for our most sacred possession. The right to live as a free people.

With freedom comes responsibility. Envied by many, challenged by some. We must never become complacent. We have a duty to preserve our way of life. It is how we repay our debt to our fathers and forefathers. It is ironic how people perceive freedom. So many take this precious gift for granted. Yet there are many others who are deeply grateful.

In the last six years I have had the opportunity to meet some really special people. Some have been celebrities or military figures. But a lot have been regular folk who just ‘get it.’ I’ve met a lot of other kids like myself and their families. It grieves me when I go to events such as TAPS, Arlington, dedications and memorials. There are a lot of people who have lost someone who can never be replaced. Because of my dad’s death, I have traveled to places and met people, I very well may never have. But I would trade all of that in a moment to get my dad back. Because none of that can fill the gap left in my heart when he died. My dad and I had many great memories that never will be forgotten. Although I get really sad sometimes, I am so thankful to have known my dad. Some children were born afterward and never got that chance. So when I see the flag waving or hear the Star-Spangled Banner or pledge my allegiance to the flag, I feel a real sense of pride. I truly hope our nation never forgets because I know I never will – FREEDOM IS NOT FREE!

Happy Independence Day, America… May ALMIGHTY GOD Bless You!

WORLD CUP ACTION: UNITED STATES vs. BELGIUM

Today’s the big day everyone! Only one team can advance to the Quarter Finals from this point. As Americans, we are proud of our country. We are proud of the achievements that TEAM USA has accomplished thus far to make it to the round of 16. We are also amazed at the achievements that TEAM BELGIUM have made.

As Americans, it is natural for us to wish that the US team advance to the Quarter Finals. As those who write about Belgian Beer, Belgian Cuisine (and the wonderful culture that is intertwined in the two) we would also rejoice if Belgium were victorious today.

Putting the World Cup aside for a moment, it is important to note that the United States and Belgium have a long history together. In more recent history, Belgians have shown their gratitude towards American Soldiers in WWII by creating War Memorials in their honor- specifically in  Neuville-en-Condroz, Flanders Field, and Henri-Chapelle.

*It is said that when Henry Hudson sailed up the New York river that now bears his name, three Flemings were aboard the ship. Certainly the Belgians participated in the early settlement (seventeenth century) of what is now Manhattan. Many historians believe that Peter Minuit, who acted as purchasing agent for the West Indian Company when Manhattan Island was bought from the resident Native Americans, was a Walloon, or at least of Belgian heritage. And it is known that his secretary, Isaac de Rasiers, was a Walloon.

Henry C. Bayer, in his book The Belgians, First Settlers in New York and in the Middle States, discussed Belgian settlements at Wallabout, Long Island, and Staten Island, as well as in Hoboken, Jersey City, Pavonia, Communipaw, and Wallkill, New Jersey. These place names are derived from both the Walloons who settled there, as well as from the Dutch version of Walloon words used to describe a locale. For example, Hoboken is named after a town in Belgium. Pavonia got its name when a Fleming, Michael Pauw, purchased land on the Jersey shore. Translating his own name, Pauw (which in Flemish and Dutch means “peacock”) into Latin, he got “Pavonia.” Wallkill is the Dutch word for “Walloon’s Stream.” Elsewhere, the Walloomsac River in Vermont derives its name from the Walloons who settled on the east branch of the Hoosac River in New York. Belgian settlements were also established during the seventeenth century in Connecticut, Delaware, and Pennsylvania. These were settled primarily by Walloons, many of whom came to America on ships owned by the West India Company, whose founder, William Usselinx, was Flemish.

A notable name connected with America’s early history is Lord Baltimore, whose family were prominent aristocrats in Flemish Belgium. Belgian officers also fought during the Revolutionary War. To note a few: Charles De Pauw, a Fleming who accompanied Lafayette to America; Ensign Thomas Van Gaasbeck, Captain Jacques Rapalje, and Captain Anthony Van Etten, all of New York; and Captain Johannes Van Etten of Pennsylvania. (* Source: EveryCulture.com “Belgian Americans”)

We believe a mutual respect between Americans and Belgians must be kept and held in high esteem. So when we see hateful behavior evoked from both sides towards each other merely to support their Soccer / Football team, we feel that it crosses the line, and is disappointing to watch.

We are all for people having national pride and supporting their team, but when we see Belgians wishing that the Red, White and Blue are “crushed” with a vengeance, or when we see an American Waffle house boycott Belgian Waffles, we say enough is enough! We say, that both Americans and Belgians should remember their history. Neither is the enemy! Belgians- remember how our soldiers liberated your country from the Nazis in WWII. Americans- remember what great contributions the Belgians have made in the United States and in society as a whole. The Belgians have blessed us with the best beers in the world. Why do you think their beer styles are some of the most imitated in the American craft beer scene?

After reading our opinion here, you may disagree with our point of view. But we would ask, why? Today as Americans, we will be cheering on the United States team first. We will also be cheering on the Belgians as well. We will rejoice if either team makes it to the Semi Finals in the World Cup.

Cheers!
Prost!
op uw gezondheid!
à votre santé!

15th Edition of Bierpassie Weekend- Groenplaats, Antwerp

Man oh man! We’ve become so caught up in WORLD CUP action, that we’ve kinda overlooked the fact that there are other events going on!

The 15TH EDITION of BIERPASSIE WEEKEND is going on now! It’s actually well timed, since there is a lull in the action in the World Cup for fans of Team Belgium.

MORE THAN 200 BEERS OF 32 BELGIAN BREWERIES

Ben Vinken, editor & publisher of Bierpassie magazine/Bièrepassion Magazine and Belgian Beer Sommelier, has the honour to invite you to the 15th edition of Beer Passion Weekend, Groenplaats Antwerp Friday 27th of june – Saturday 28th of june, Sunday 29th of june 2014

Already the 15th edition!

32 breweries will propose you more than 200 speciality beers to taste at this event both open for beer aficionados as well as beer professionals. The main purpose of this event is to offer a cultural and educational approach to beer, a complex drink that is aromatic, sensual, naturel and the timeless fruit of an art that dates back to antiquity.

For more info, visit the website: http://www.bierpassieweekend.be/en/index_en.html