Closure – October, 2014

Thank you to all of our customers that have made the past three and a half years very enjoyable. As you know, we have closed The Whistle. Since then, we’ve had tremendous feed back from home brewers about the absence of the home brew store, so we’re working on a solution.

We will keep posting updates!


Cheryl Umberger

Beerituality – Episode 2

We sell beer for profit, which of course, is not a surprise to you. We’re a micro business that exists in a neighborhood full of personalities. This means that sometimes those personalities wander in and they aren’t buying beer or anything else that you sell, for that matter.

One of the terrific things about The Whistle specifically is that all of the employees understand empathy and have no trouble lending a hand when they can. One year, however, I had an employee that couldn’t quite grasp the subtleties and importance of kind human interactions.

In the dead of winter it is absolutely frigid on the floor of The Whistle. From time to time it is so cold out that I must pull the big door down and request that people use the glass door because if I left our garage door open we might have frozen beer. Such was the case on a stunningly cold day last February.

An older lady that I had never seen before stumbled into the store and looked highly disoriented. I walked out of the office and noticed that her face was bright red, she was clenching her hands and she was near to tears.

“I can’t walk anymore!” she gasped.

“Here”, I said as I pointed to the bench near the door, “sit down.”

It turned out that she had been inside of her apartment for days and was feeling a little stir crazy so she decided to go for a walk. But, as she walked, she lost track of exactly where she was and then became very, very cold. She asked if she could use my phone to call her friend, which I let her do and I suggested that she just sit still and wait inside to take the chill off.

Within a half hour or so someone came along to pick her up and off she went. “Why would you let her stay in here? She wasn’t buying beer.” My employee said.

“True,” I answered, “but it never hurts us to just be kind.” I paused and then added, “In fact, I’m of the belief that the more of that we do the better off we are.”

He shrugged and carried on with his day. Eventually he decided that The Whistle wasn’t the place for him and I agreed. We ended our acquaintance amiably, and I hoped that in his future endeavors he learned that compassion is never something we can afford to discard.

Beerituality – Episode 1

A few years back I posted a blog piece around the time of the New Year. It was a little philosophical and I thought that it wouldn’t be popular, but it turned out to be a talked about piece. I’ve been spending a lot of time pondering a few things about The Whistle lately and I realized how personal and in a strange sense spiritual the beer store is. So I thought I’d post a few more episodes of my beeritual experiences.

There are so many experiences that I thought you might like episodes. Here’s the first one.

A woman comes into the beer store once every three weeks and stocks up on beer. Eventually, I learn that part of the beer is for her husband and part of it is for her. I see her time and time again and I notice when she starts coughing more than usual and then when she is pale.

Kindly, I ask if she’s feeling ok. She tells me that she always has allergies. I think maybe there’s more, but this isn’t the place to talk about it.

More weeks go by and I remember that I haven’t seen her in awhile. Her husband stops in and buys a little less beer than usual. She’s in the hospital, he says. He’s not sure if she will make it out. My heart is breaking for her and for her family and I hug him knowing that maybe that seems a weird thing to happen in a beer store. I tell him that he’s to give her well wishes from all of us.

I wonder if the grocery store noticed that she wasn’t coming in. And then I think that she might feel awkward knowing that the lady at the beer store missed seeing her. But I did. Not just because she bought beer, but because we were neighborly.

Maybe before I owned a beer store I would judge someone and say that if she wanted to be healthy she should have cut back on the beer. My multiple degrees in health might have motivated me to think that way. But what is health? Is it only physical? What of our psyche?

Of course, we could all make better decisions about what we put in our bodies. The beer store has given me a chance to love more without judgment. Accept more of humanity with all of its complexities. The beer store has made me a better person. Everyone has something that they’re dealing with and they’re dealing with it in whatever way they can.

At this point, my judgment would be the last thing that she or her family need. The beeritual lesson was to find loving space and hold it for her. Bring peace into my mind and extend it to her.

Memorable Memorial Day – Sat. May 24th


2:30 – 4:30

Free Sampling of Yuengling Summer Wheat!

Drop your name in for free summer drawings!

Stock up with terrific summer sales through Monday, May 26th:

Labatt Blue & Blue Light 30 pack/12 oz. Cans $20.99

Corona & Corona Light 24 Pack/12 oz. Bottles & Cans $27.50

Sam Adams Variety 24 Pack/12 oz. Bottles $32.85

Blue Moon 24 Pack/12 oz. Bottles $29.50

8th Street Music Fest – September 27, 2014

It may seem like it’s far away, but the days are going to warm up quickly and the committee for this year’s 8th Street Music Fest is already hard at work planning a terrific event. WYW is integrally involved with planning and participating in this event and we have more and more fun every year.

Check out the new web site at:



2014 Homebrew Competition Winners

An enormous thank you to all of the volunteers from the Lebanon Area Fermenters and the BJCP judges that took part in the competition yesterday. The final information and standings are as follows:

11 BJCP Categories Represented

109 Entries

All feed back forms will be mailed or, if you are local, you can pick the forms up at Wet Your Whistle as of Friday, January 31. We are working on sorting, so Friday is the earliest pick up day.

Best of Show: Joe Bump from Burke, VA for his “Little Johnny Guy Rye” – Rye Pale Ale – Category 6A


#1 – Rob Knighton, Columbia, PA Category 3A for his 023-13

#2 Rob Knighton, Columbia, PA Category 1D for his 80/20

#3 Rob Knighton Columbia, PA Category 4C for his Black Beer


#1 Joe Bump, Burke, VA Category 6D for his Little Johnny Rye Guy

#2 Jacob Kustan, Hershey, PA, Category 8C for his English Pale Ale I

#3 Joe Bump, Burke, VA Category 9E for his Aye Laddy


#1 Jim Borneman, Lebanon, PA, Category 10B for his Richies Red Ale

#2 Brian Ramberger, Sinking Spring, PA, Category 10A for his Schmoogdaddy Citra Pale Ale

#3 Steven Landgren, Webster, NY, Category 10A for his USPA


#1 Nate Mooney, Elkton, MD, Category 12A for his Honey Porter

#2 Rob Knighton, Columbia, PA, Category 11B for his 028-13

#3 Rob Knighton, Columbia, PA Category 12A for his 026-13


#1 Chris Bible, Knoxville, TN, Category 13D for his Ebony Insanity

#2 Michael Potorti, Stratham, NH, Category 13A for his Beara Irish Stout

#3 Jacob Kustan, Hershey, PA, Category 13C for his English Stout I


#1 Tyler Smerlick, Buffalo, NY, Category 14C for his IPA

#2 Eric Stoffer, Lebanon, PA, Category 14B for his Mosaic IPA

#3 Michael Cox, Lebanon, PA, Category 14B for his Cent IPA


#1 Travis J. Miller, Chambersburg, PA, Category 16C for his New Age Saison

#2 Anthony J. Becampis, Wirtz, VA, Category 15D for his DST Roggenbier

#3 William Cullen, East Stroudsburg, PA, Category 16E for his Djoyous Noye


#1 Eric Heinrich, Lebanon, PA, Category 18C for his Strong Words

#2 Brian Ramberger, Sinking Springs, PA, Category 18E for his Schmoogdaddy Belgian Strong Ale

#3 Brian Ramberger, Sinking Springs, PA, Category 18C for his Schmoogdaddyy Tripel


#1 Ryan Ulrich, Lebanon, PA, Category 21A for his Fire on the Mountain

#2 Dean Pierce, Ephrata, PA, Category 21A for his Mocha Oatmeal Stout

#3 Travis Miller, Chambersburg, PA, Category 21A for his Revenge on Cortez


#1 Dean Pierce, Ephrata, PA, Category 22C for his Phenom

#2 Eric Heinrich, Lebanon, PA, Category 22C for his Toasted Talk

#3 Nate Mooney, Elkton, MD, Category 22C for his Oak Aged Stout


#1 Mike Bednar, Harrisburg, PA, Category 23 for his Bednarz Pivo

#2 Bruce Kramer, West Chester, PA, Category 26A for his Mead

#3 Dean Pierce, Ephrata, PA, Category 23 for his Midnight Flight

2014 Lebanon Homebrew Competition

The freeze is in the air and it is once again time for the Lebanon Bolognafest on Saturday, January 25, 2014. This year Wet Your Whistle and the Lebanon Area Fermenters will host the second annual homebrew contest at Bolognafest.

With 20 days left for submissions we’re getting very excited! We’re receiving submissions from all over the country and as an AHA sanctioned competition we’re expecting this to be our best one yet.

Cheers to all of you that have already dropped off your entries and to all of you waiting, we’ll see you by January 20th. Happy New Year!


Homebrewing Tutorials


These short vidoes by the American Homebrewer’s Association are perfect for getting started:

Learning to Homebrew: Lesson 1 Introduction

Learning to Homebrew: Lesson 2 Brewing Ingredients

Learning to Homebrew: Lesson 3 Brewing Equipment

Learnig to Homebrew: Lesson 4 Sanitizing 

Learning to Homebrew: Lesson 5 Brewing Part 1

Learning to Homebrew: Lesson 6 Brewing Part 2

Learning to Homebrew: Lesson 7 Fermentation

Learning to Homebrew: Lesson 8 Preparing to Bottle

Learning to Homebrew: Lesson 9 Bottling