Foothills Brewing

Musings and Mashings

My Time as a Marketing Intern for Foothills, or Why I’m Now a Cat Person: a Memoir

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Steph EDITOR’S NOTE: It’s been a melancholy month here at the brewery; while we finally bottled some Jade (yippee!) and broke ground on our new tap room, we also had to say goodbye to our beloved untern Steph. Her parting gift to us was a blogpost about her Foothills adventure.


When I graduated from high school many moons ago (OK, 2011), my school decided, for the first time ever, to have a celebrity commencement speaker. Wow! Oprah? Steve Jobs? My classmates and I threw around all kinds of names following the announcement. I mean, both those options are entirely plausible for a graduating high school class, right?

Inevitably, we got some Z-lister–I’m too embarrassed even to mention him by name–an extra in a Transformers franchise. Whatever. But ironically, aforementioned Z-list actor’s words still resonate with me all these years (OK, months) later, and are applicable to the illustrious occasion of completing my Foothills unternship.

Mr. Z-List awaited a hush to come over the audience. 250 bright-eyed grads and their families buzzed in anticipation of the valuable insight this man would soon impart. This was his moment.  Fully aware that his first words would set a precedent for his entire speech and all speeches that followed, he took a deep breath.

“Okay, I’ve never done this before, so I hope I don’t suck.”

With those inspiring words in mind, I tackle my very first blog post, for my very first craft beer internship.


Steph 1

any similarities are purely coincidental

I’ve actually learned a few things while working here at Foothills. On my very first day, I learned to be EXTREMELY CAUTIOUS when searching through photos tagged “#sexualchocolate” on Instagram. Did you just try it? I warned you! #fail.

Ironically, looking at something that’s so totally “NSFW” is actually sorta kinda “FW” in my case. That’s the cool part about working at a brewery. No, I don’t mean scrolling through pictures of oiled-up selfies in hopes of finding mentions of that sweet nectar-of-the-gods we call Sexual Chocolate Imperial Stout. I’m talking about the big picture here– having the freedom to do things a little unconventionally. That’s the cool part.

An afternoon meeting at the brewpub immediately comes to mind. Six of us huddled around a high-top table in the back—me, my boss Ray, Co-Owner Matt, Chef Shane, Rob, and Dave.

This meeting of the minds was no average brainstorming session. The Official Foothills Thinktank–the first person to create a shirt that says this can be an honorary member of the group–spent this two hour summit dumping copious amounts of hot sauce into tasting glasses of beer.

Why? Because here at Foothills, we hate beer!

Of course that’s not really why we desecrated perfectly good craft beer. I’m not entirely sure if I’m allowed to disclose the reasoning behind our actions for confidentiality reasons or whatever. (editor’s note: she’s not) Also, if I’m being perfectly honest, hot sauce and beer make for a surprisingly good combo.

That unconventional approach also, um, well . . . made me ready to be a cat person.

Allow me to explain.

Barley HopFlashback to a month ago, when I was still a naïve intern (redundant term, right?). Ray and I sat in his office, developing rules for the now-epic IPA of the Month dog contest.

Ray suggested a number of brilliant ideas as to how we could narrow down the number of submissions. At the time, I didn’t realize that Ray is not only a marketing guru, but also a wizard who can see into the future.

I, in my infinite intern wisdom, suggested that there simply aren’t enough people out there who are passionate about both beer and their dogs. How on earth was he worried about being inundated by submissions? We’d get maybe a hundred. Maybe.

I know what you’re thinking, I know. “How did this girl get hired?! How did she not know Ray is a sorcerer? This is an outrage!”

Ray, being the accommodating boss he is, acknowledged my viewpoint and we kept the rules as-is. What followed was 3 1/2 weeks of social-media-induced carpal tunnel, as I was put in charge of categorizing and organizing close to 1,400 pictures of dogs sent in by their adoring owners.

Steph 2I think it goes without saying that I was wrong. But I’ll say it anyway. 1,300+ submissions later, I’m ready to be a cat person.

In all seriousness . . . well, not in ALL seriousness, ’cause we rarely are around here . . . I’d like to say ‘thank you’ to Foothills fans for your contributions to the contest and for your quips on social media, both of which provided me with countless laughs.

Your continued participation in our online community is what allows Foothills to do things how we like—unconventionally.


Author: foothillsbrewing

Finely crafted beers available in NC, SC, TN, VA, WV, GA and DC.

One thought on “My Time as a Marketing Intern for Foothills, or Why I’m Now a Cat Person: a Memoir

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