Notch Brewing and the Trustees Team Up on a Traveling Biergarten

Session beer pops up at scenic, outdoor properties all around Massachusetts this summer.

The Notch Biergarten in Salem

The Notch Biergarten in Salem. / Photo provided by Notch Brewing

It’s shaping up to be the summer of open-air beer bars, with new taps flowing on the Greenway, underneath the Southeast Expressway, in a Canton industrial park, and more. Now one of the state’s best choices for day-drinking is taking its beer garden on the road: Notch Brewing has partnered with the Trustees conservation group to bring a European-style biergarten to scenic parks, farms, and cultural sites around Greater Boston.

Notch, which has a delightful riverside beer garden at its Salem brewery, has custom-built a four-draft van for its sessionable (read: less-than-4.5-percent alcohol-by-volume) lagers and ales. The traveling setup will include beer garden-style seating, string lights, half-liter ceramic steinkrugs (beer mugs), plus family-friendly activities tailored to each host site.

It will pop up at different Trustees properties from the North Shore to Central Mass. Events are on the calendar from mid-May through October, often for a few nights in a row, and often in conjunction with other Trustees events. It starts May 17-20 at the Stevens-Coolidge Place estate in North Andover, during the Trustees’ fifth annual Home Sweet Home Historic Open House Weekend.

“This collaboration allows us to take the sociable aspects of session beer from our Biergarten on the South River of Salem to other attractive, natural spaces around Massachusetts,” Notch founder Chris Lohring said in a press release.

The Trustees is the country’s first preservation and conservation organization, founded in 1891 to protect what is now Rocky Narrows in Sherborn. Today, the nonprofit oversees 116 landscapes and landmarks, 270-plus miles of recreation trails, the Kitchen at the Boston Public Market, and more.

“Our mission is to provide fun and innovative ways to get more people, especially families, into the outdoors and enjoying nature together,” Trustees president and CEO Barbara Erickson said in a press release. “We’re excited to be working with Notch Brewing as their first, official outdoor partner.”

The idea is to eventually expand the mobile biergarten to other public appearances, and to offer it for private rentals, notes Notch brand activations and events manager JT Thompson.

Admission to the Notch biergartens will generally be free, with lawn games, live music, and activities like Notch’s Meters for Liters fun runs; though some Trustees events have admission fees, including Oktoberfest-themed events in September and October.

“Our program offers the opportunity to create a communal feel and share more about what each organization offers while making the most of New England’s warm weather and late sunsets,” Lohring said.

The full list of the Trustees’ and Notch’s Mobile Biergarten events follows. For more information, check out the calendar at

The Stevens–Coolidge Place in North Andover

The Stevens–Coolidge Place in North Andover will host the first Trustees and Notch mobile biergarten this spring. / Photo provided by Notch Brewing

May 17-20 Stevens-Coolidge Place in North Andover featuring the Home Sweet Home open house day on Saturday, May 19

June 15-17 Powisset Farm in Dover featuring the annual Father’s Day Bluegrass BBQ on Sunday, June 17.

July 8 Castle Hill on the Crane Estate in Ipswich

July 13-14 Appleton Farms in Ipswich

July 21-22 The Eleanor Cabot Bradley Estate in Canton

July 27-29 Rocky Woods in Medfield

August 19 Castle Hill on the Crane Estate in Ipswich

August 24-25 Francis William Bird Park in Walpole featuring Dog Day on Saturday, August 25, in celebration of and with four-legged friends

September 6-9 Powisset Farm in Dover

September 13-16 Stevens Coolidge Place in North Andover featuring an Oktoberfest

September 22-23 Fruitlands Musuem in Harvard as part of their annual Craft Festival

October 5-7 Chestnut Hill Farm in Southborough featuring Sunday’s Harvest Fest

November 3-4 Castle Hill at Crane Estate during the annual Art Show and Sale