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Oklawaha Brewing Co. to open in Sanctuary space

Sanctuary Brewing Co. will be closing the doors of its Hendersonville location in early June and reopen as Oklawaha Brewing Co., headed by Sanctuary Brewing co-owner and head brewer Joe Dinan.


“We think the transition will be a smooth one," Dinan said. "We’ll be reopening with the same bar staff, the same great lineup of brews, and the same love for the Hendersonville community. We are super excited for the next phase, we’ll be making a few physical changes to the space and hope to hit the ground running once the Covid outbreak has passed. Until then we’ll continue to offer to-go and curbside pickup and will open back up for in house service as the local government allows."

Lisa McDonald, co-founder and current co-owner of SBC, plans on reopening not only Sanctuary Brewing Co. in a new location with all of the flagship beers, but also a restaurant, event space and a true animal sanctuary.

Inconceivable Cafe, also owned by McDonald closed in late March as a result of the Covid-19 restrictions, with the eye towards reopening with Sanctuary Brewing in a new location.

“I’ve always thought of Sanctuary Brewing Company as a true sanctuary that celebrates not only incredible craft beer, but also advocates for human and non human animals in creative ways,” McDonald said. “We also host some of the best local live music around.”

Some of the ways Sanctuary Brewing has historically advocated for the community are the Kindness Wall where people can take or leave necessities including coats, hats, gloves, scarves, toiletries, and food, and the monthly Help4 Hendo events McDonald hosted at Sanctuary where anyone can come in for clothing, toiletries, a hot meal, and a free haircut.

”The next generation of that vision is going to include all of those elements, and so much more,” says McDonald.

McDonald is currently researching properties that would allow Sanctuary Brewing to exist on a true sanctuary space, complete with a brewery, taproom, restaurant and animal sanctuary. The property will also have overnight accommodations and fun events like live music, yoga, brewing classes, cooking classes, and interactions with the animals, just to name a few. She also plans on keeping the commitment to helping the local community, as Sanctuary Brewing Co. has from day one.

“It's going to be unlike anything anyone has done before and we cannot wait to get started!” McDonald said.

Sanctuary Brewing Company boasts an inclusive philosophy of service and advocacy to both humans and animals, and that will always be at the core of our mission and vision.

McDonald founded Kindness Empire in 2017, a non-profit that advocates for all human and non-human animals. Under the Kindness Empire Umbrella, she founded Sweet Bear Rescue Farm, an animal sanctuary for abused and neglected farm animals. SBRC is currently home to 45 animals that McDonald cares for, including cats, chickens, dogs, goats, pigs and turkeys.