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Captain Lawrence Celebrates Fifth Anniversary

About 1,000 beer lovers came out for the occasion.

For the past five years, Pleasantville has been home to its very own brewery.

And for Founder Scott Vaccaro, it all started years before he was of legal drinking age.

"It began when I was 17-years-old," he recalled. "I went to my friend's house after school and his dad was making beer on the stove."

After obtaining permission from his parents, Vaccaro became a student of the craft and learned the basics of brewing beer.

"That was kind of like the beginning of the end," he said.

From there, Vaccaro, 33, went on to receive of a Bachelor's of Science degree in fermentation science from UC Davis and got a gig working for Sierra Nevada on the west coast.

A native of South Salem, Vaccaro ended up back in Westchester about six years later, and began scouting out real estate for his own brewery.

The current Pleasantville location, named for the street Vaccaro grew up on, has been up and running since the beginning of 2006.

"It looked like an airplane hanger," Vaccaro said of the space that was used for storage prior to being transformed into the brewery.

"The first day we opened up the tasting room was on Superbowl Sunday in February 2006," recalled Vaccaro. "When 250 people showed up, I was just blown away. It was an amazing moment."

Now, many Westchester bars and restaurants serve up the brewery's products.

" in Pleasantville was the first one to pour our beer," he said.

These days, , and are among the other local venues who keep the drafts on tap.

Bridge View Tavern and Sleepy Hollow and Quaker Hill Tavern in Chappaqua also serve Captain Lawrence products.

"I just absolutely love what I do," said Vaccaro, looking back five years after the brewery opened for business. "It can be complex and rewarding to make new styles of beer. And seeing people enjoy it is extremely rewarding."

Saturday's fifth anniversary celebration gave the owner the opportunity to see just that—he estimates about 1,000 beer lovers made the trip out to the brewery to enjoy beer, good company and live music provided by five bands.

Looking ahead, Vaccaro said, "We'd love to get our beer into 12 oz. bottles," which would be ideal for selling in 12-packs.

"That's our next goal, really," he explained, but for now, "We're very happy to be here and very happy for the local support."

Captain Lawrence Brewery offers free tastings/retail sales on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays and complimentary tours of the brewery on Saturdays. Visit the brewery's website for more information.

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