Reporting Aristea Brady
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – A business trip to the small town of Knoxville, Iowa, gave one Bloomington man “the surprise of his life” – a chance encounter with President Barack Obama.
“I’m known here in the Twin Cities as ‘Brad the Beer guy,” said Brad Magerkurth. “So for a living, I talk to people, and if things seem a little bit stiff, I serve ‘em some beer.”
Little did “the beer guy” know that he was the one who would be served up a beer, and the surprise of his life.
“We had no idea. Actually, we were a little bit hungover,” Magerkurth said, recalling that day. “And we went into this small coffee shop to, you know, just kind of liven up a bit.”
He had just gotten his biscuits and gravy when the surprise – Ground Force One — arrived.
“It looked like someone from the White House staff had gone on over to Walgreens and picked up 14 plaid shirts, because they were told that’s what people in Iowa wear,” Magerkurth said.
He continued: “And [the president] just came right up and he said, ‘Hey, what’s your name?’ and I said, ‘Hey, Brad the Beer Guy!’”
And not two minutes in, the two got to talking about the president’s home brew.
“He said, ‘Hey, I brew a beer with Michelle…that’s made with honey.”
The honey comes from a beehive in Michelle Obama’s garden.
“And I’m thinking, ‘Awesome!’, and I think that’s what I said, too.”
Before the conversation ended, at the request of the president, an aid brought a label-less bottle to Magerkurth.
“How many times do you get to shake hands with the leader of the free world…and he gives you a beer,” he said.
But Magerkurth doesn’t blame his encounter on luck or fate.
“It’s karma,” he said. “It’s beer karma.”
He added: “Beer brings people together, that’s what I love about it.”
After Obama left, Magerkurth brought in the beer for everyone in the cafe.
As for now, Magerkurth is keeping the beer in a safe. He says when he does decide to pop the top off the beer, he plans to share it with several people, including his wife.