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$14,212 pledged of $35,000 goal
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By The WAM! Fam
$14,212 pledged of $35,000 goal
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About this project

WHAT THE WAM?!

The Whiskey of America Museum (WAM!) will celebrate the forgotten history, hidden science and quirky culture of American Whiskey. Interactive exhibits built by Pittsburgh maker, science, and art organizations, will educate visitors through play  and adventure. 

Like a children's museum for grownups. With alcohol!

REGIONAL BEVERAGE EMPORIUM

WAM! will also host a Regional Tasting Room & Bottle Shop which will sell local spirits, beer, ciders and wine by the glass and/or bottle.

RYE WHISKEY TRAIL

WAM! will serve as the trailhead for a Rye Whiskey Trail connecting distilleries from Pittsburgh to George Washington's historic Mount Vernon Distillery, all via the Great Allegheny Passage and Cumberland Bike Paths. 

WAM! and this Trail will bring visitors from all over our great United States to learn American Whiskey stories not currently told and will help the Mid-Atlantic reclaim its Rye Whiskey identity.

WHY PITTSBURGH

Heritage

Back when Kentucky was just a bun in our nation's oven, Pittsburgh was producing the country's whiskey. Rye Whiskey. Half a barrel for every man, woman, and child in America. So sure, sure when it comes to Bourbon, the south has a nice story. But Rye Whiskey, that's northern territory, friends. And no one, has a claim on Rye like Pittsburgh, the birthplace of American Whiskey and Monongahela Rye.  

Let's just count this region's claim on Whiskey heritage:

1. The Whiskey Rebellion. The first excise tax, first federal insurrection and the one and only time in American history that a sitting president has led troops against his own people happened in Western Pennsylvania. And it was all about our Whiskey. It was that good.

2.  Pittsburgh Whiskey funded the Steel Industry. Pittsburgh whiskey built the fortunes of America’s industrialists including Henry Clay Frick, who was born on the grounds of one of America’s great Distilleries.

3.  Pittsburgh produced the Country's Prohibition Overlord. (We apologize, America.) Pittsburgher Andrew Mellon enforced Prohibition as Secretary of the Treasury while at the same time running an immense Rye Whiskey Distillery south of Pittsburgh.

4. The Speakeasy was born here. (You're welcome, America.) The "Spake-easy" was created and coined by Scots-Irish bar owner Kate Hester in McKeesport.

5. Shot & A Beer--a Pittsburgh innovation, born as an "imp and iron," melding two great gifts into a beverage institution.

Food & Drink Splendor

Named this year by Saveur as a Beer and Spirits Destination; home to one the country's most awarded craft whiskey distilleries; named Zagat's top food city, and home to about a zillion craft breweries, there are many reasons to celebrate drinking in Pittsburgh. 

The WAM! Fam

Look at this line up? It's a smarty-pants, creative little engine that could!!

Committee

Meredith Meyer Grelli, WAM! & Rye Whiskey Trail Founder;  Wigle Whiskey Founder & Co-Owner

Rebecca Aloisi, George Washington's Mount Vernon

Lew Bryson, Author of Tasting Whiskey

Lauren Byrne, Allegheny County Economic Development

Drew Cranisky, NextPgh

Wayne Curtis, Atlantic Monthly and Wall Street Journal 

Dan Gilman, Pittsburgh City Council

Monica Hershberger, Wigle Whiskey

Kristen Hughes, Carnegie Mellon School of Design

Jessica Kadie-Barclay, West Overton Museums & Village

Hal B. Klein, Pittsburgh Magazine

Brian Kurtz, Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership

Kate Lukaszewicz, Wigle Whiskey

Christopher Moehle, Carnegie Mellon University

Kara Newman, Wine Enthusiast

Adam Nye, City as Our Campus at Winchester Thurston

Jordan Pallitto, Hill Group Inc

Audrey Russo, Pittsburgh Technology Council

Sean Sebastian, Birchmere Ventures

Andrea Stanley, Valley Malt

Jill Steiner, Wigle Whiskey

David Wondrich, Author of Imbibe & Punch

LOCATION  

We have narrowed down our potential WAM! Pop Up locations to a few sites--each in the city of Pittsburgh. We'll reveal the Pop Up location first to those who claim the Pop Up Surprise Party reward in this campaign. 

A successful Pop Up will raise the funds we need to secure a permanent home for WAM in 2017. 

EXHIBIT TOPICS 

 WAM! will open with the following exhibit topics: 

  •  Science of Whiskey Production with a special focus on Malting & Fermentation 
  •  Culture around Whiskey through Music, Art and Literature 
  •  History of American & Pittsburgh Whiskey 
  •  Craft Movement & Cocktail Culture

How Can I Help?   

Log in--you can even use your Amazon account!

Choose and purchase the reward(s) you’re interested in

Share our project with everyone you know. Spread it to widely, because you know that if we don’t reach our goal we get nothing. NOTHING! 

What Will We Do With the Money? 

These funds will support the design, materials and build out exhibits for the WAM! Pop Up. This Kickstarter fundraising goal represents a portion of the $1.1 Million WAM! permanent museum cost. With these funds we'll be able to get the Pop Up off the ground. This campaign will unlock six figure support from Wigle Whiskey for the permanent WAM! Museum project.

 

 

Risks and challenges

So the good news is that with a Whiskey Museum, no one's life is at stake. And the even better news is that Wigle will be assuming much of the risk for the museum, once it's operational.

The biggest risk to Kickstarter contributors is that since we are not entirely funding the museum via Kickstarter, we won't raise all the money we need to get the pop up off the ground.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    WAM! Sticker

    Support a great project and get the sticker to prove it!

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    WAM! Whiskey Snifter Glass

    Enjoy a glass of your favorite in this styling snifter.

    All locals will be able to pick up at the Distillery. (We promise to make that visit worth your while!)

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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    Admission to WAM! Pop Up

    Secure admission the WAM! Pop Up, which will feature 3 Whiskey of America Exhibits, a Pennsylvania Bar and Bottle Shop.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    WAM! T-shirt

    Show your support of WAM! in this American Apparel shirt with the WAM! logo.

    Pick up at the Distillery for people in Pittsburgh region. We'll ship t-shirts destined for outside of Allegheny County.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    WAM! Tote Bag

    Sturdy enough to hold whiskey, beer and wine...oh and groceries too.

    We'll ship totes destined for outside of the Pittsburgh region only. All locals will be able to pick up at the Distillery. (We promise to make that visit worth your while!)

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    VIP Reception with David Wondrich

    Meet America's pre-eminent cocktail and whiskey author, David Wondrich on August 25. You will join us for an intimate reception with the author of Imbibe and Punch in the Carnegie Library Main's Poetry room before attending his talk at the Carnegie Library Lecture Hall.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Wigle T-Shirt

    Our classic Wigle bottle tee shows everyone you have your drinking priorities in order.

    Pick up at the Distillery for people in Pittsburgh region. We'll ship t-shirts destined for outside of Allegheny County.

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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    Whiskey Barrel Aged Coffee Beans

    You're going to stick your nose in this bag and then you're going to try to climb into it. This is locally roasted, organic whole bean coffee aged in Wigle Whiskey barrels. It's so ridiculously decadent, in the morning when you drink it, you will say HOLY SMOKES, I've never had coffee like this.

    Pick up at the Distillery for people in Pittsburgh region. We'll ship coffee destined for outside of Allegheny County.

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    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    WAM! Pop Up Grand Opening Party!

    Join us for all the festivities when we launch the WAM Pop Up in November! The chance to experience the exhibits first and lavish in your support of this historic endeavor. Food, Drink, Music for you.

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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    WAM! Hoodie

    This lightweight, go anywhere, branded pullover hoodie will keep you cozy through the many temperature variations that the Mid Atlantic gifts us.

    Pick up at the Distillery for people in Pittsburgh region. We'll ship hoodies destined for outside of Allegheny County.

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    Pledge $80 or more About $80

    $100 Wigle Gift Card

    Well this is pretty cut and dry. Support WAM with $75 bucks and you get a Wigle gift card for $100. We're no mathematicians but that sounds like some arbitrage.

    (Gift card can be redeemed on all Wigle products. Card has no cash value.)

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  12. Select this reward

    Pledge $95 or more About $95

    $100 Wigle Gift Card

    Well this is pretty cut and dry. Support WAM with $95 bucks and you get a Wigle gift card for $100. We're no mathematicians but that sounds like some arbitrage.

    (Gift card can be redeemed on all Wigle products. Card has no cash value.)

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  13. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Merch Me!

    WAM! Tshirt, Tote, and Hoodie. We'll ship rewards destined for outside of the Pittsburgh region only. All locals will be able to pick up at the Distillery.

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  14. Select this reward

    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    WAM! Engraved 10 Liter Oak Barrel

    Use this toasted oak barrel to age your own beer or spirits! 10 Liter barrels holds approximately 12 bottles of liquor.

    Pick up at the Distillery for people in Pittsburgh region. We'll ship barrels destined for outside of Allegheny County.

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    Pledge $185 or more About $185

    $200 Wigle Gift Card

    OMG it's even better. More Wigle gift carding action.

    (Gift card can be redeemed on all Wigle products. Card has no cash value.)

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    Autograph a Historic Barrel

    Sign your name to a historic barrel, which will be housed at the Whiskey of America Museum. This will serve as proof to your children and your children's children that you were a part of something great. It will sit, encased, alongside the first barrel of whiskey released in Pittsburgh since Prohibition.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Distillers for a day

    Your opportunity for a behind-the-scenes whiskey-making experience. You and a buddy spend the day with one of Wigle's distilling masterminds, and see what it takes to put out the good stuff. Be warned: gifting this package to the whiskey-lover in your life may result in an excess of gratitude and hugs. Includes lunch for you and your friend.

    (Gift card has no cash value.)

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  18. Select this reward

    Pledge $2,500 or more About $2,500

    Party at Wigle or WAM! Pop Up

    A party for you and 39 of your closest friends at your pick of Wigle locations or the WAM! Pop Up. Includes 2 hour rental plus two drink tickets per guest.

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Funding period

- (35 days)