Currier Museum of Art in Manchester pairs beer and art

MANCHESTER – If you’re going to visit the Currier Museum of Art, you can leave your opera glasses and ermine stole at home.

“Art museums have a reputation for being stodgy; we are not,” said Steve Konick, Ph.D., director of PR and Marketing for the museum at 150 Ash St., Manchester. “We just want people to get in, have a good experience, feel comfortable, and have a moment to have some fun and go into the gallery.”

That moment is from 6-9 p.m. next Thursday, July 2, when you can join Currier After Hours for some local craft beer tasting and art appreciation at the museum.

Start your holiday weekend by sampling some state-made beers, including selections from Able Ebenezer Brewing Company from Merrimack, Kelsen Brewing Company from Derry and Milly’s Tavern from Manchester. Attendees can watch excerpts from the film “Brew Hampshire” by Slate Roof Films, and hear singer/songwriter Alli Beaudry. Then it’s time to enjoy a museum tour that looks at the theme of “celebration” in art.

“People in New England love craft breweries,” Konick said. “We did a beer tasting last year and it was very successful. Milly’s is a repeat, but Able Ebenezer and Kelson are new this time,” Konick said. “Last year we also had Smuttynose, Throwback and 603. As we see how this takes off, it may go in new directions. But for now, we’ll just a few (local brewers),” he said.

The event starts with taster sizes. The beer being sampled also will be available at the bar, in a full pint or glass. A cash bar and full menu will be available at the Winter Garden Cafe, the museum’s airy restaurant area.

“The main event is in the Winter Garden Cafe, and then (attendees follow) signs all over the museum,” Konick said. “We’ll take a tour of the art that’s related to the theme of ‘celebration.’ The underlying intent of Currier After Hours events is that we want to relate it all back to art,” he said.

Currier After Hours events are held the first Thursday of the month, with a different theme each time. “It depends on the exhibitions we have,” Konick said. “For example, we’re celebrating the 25th anniversary of tours at the Zimmerman House. The building is more than 50 years old, though. So in August, we’re going to do a 1950s sock hop bash,” he said.

Konick was quick to give credit to Lynn Thomson, who’s the creative mind behind Currier After Hours. The rest of this year’s events are slated as:

• July 2: Beer tasting

• Aug. 6: 1950s Summer Bash

• Sept. 3: Boston Typewriter Orchestra

• Oct. 1: Oktoberfest

• Nov. 5: Early holiday shopping

• Dec. 3: Dimensions in Dance, Manchester Community Music School, happy holidays.

Currier After Hours events are free with museum admission, and museum members are admitted free. Nonmembers museum admission is $12 adults, $10 seniors.

“Currier After Hours is a blast,” Konick said. “We just want people to come and have fun.

“We’re New Hampshire’s museum.”

Kathleen Palmer can be reached at 594-6403, kpalmer@nashua telegraph.com or @NHFoodand Fun and @Telegraph_KathP.