ELIZABETH CITY, NC (WVEC) --- 13News Now Anchor Philip Townsend went searching for a microbrewery in Elizabeth City Thursday.
He didn’t find one.
That’s because, before this week, there wasn’t an ordinance allowing them downtown.
That changed Monday, when city council approved a new ordinance gives microbreweries a chance to open downtown.
Two microbreweries, the Elizabeth City Brewing Company and the Ghost Harbor Brewing Company, already have plans to open locations downtown.
Elizabeth City Brewing will open in the now-vacant Fowler Building on North Water Street. Ghost Harbor will be located on Colonial Avenue.
Unlike most bars and restaurants, microbreweries make and sell their own local beer.
It will also give locals, like Paul Holland, something to rally behind.
“Helps with our community so it’s a win win,” Holland said.
Craft beer has proven to be an economic driver. Less than a decade ago, the city of Norfolk welcomed its first full sized brewery. Since then the city’s scene has exploded.
O’Connor Brewing Company, the brewery that paved the way for Norfolk, is now one of the fastest-growing companies in the state.
Elizabeth city probably won't get to that point anytime soon, but the scene has to start somewhere.