Mitch Freeman, our Seasonal Packaging Technician, has been doing a great job behind the packaging line.
“Mitch stood out to me for a few reasons,” says Mark. “First, I like that he’s at least tried to homebrew, but I like that he’s a really positive guy, and that he works hard. And anyone willing to jump out of airplanes on a regular basis has to be willing to take a risk or two.”
Originally from Doylestown, PA, Mitch already knows quite a few people on staff: he graduated from New Hope-Solebury High School, also the alma mater of Marketing Assistant Kristen Taylor and Brewtique Associate Taylor Coleman.
“I’ve known Kristen for over a decade, now,” he says. “They’re good family friends. And Taylor was a grade above me.”
From there, he moved on to West Virginia University, where he was a member of Phi Kappa Psi fraternity, was the president of the Video Game Club, and majored in Philosophy.
“It was really the only thing that captured my interest enough to study it,” he says, defensively. “So, I just rolled with it and hoped something would happen later on. That was Future Mitch’s problem.”
Going to school in West Virginia was quite an experience for Mitch.
“It’s a different world down there, man,” he laughs. “Any West Virginia native, talking to them you wonder, ‘Where did you come from? You and I are from two different worlds.’”
Mitch has tried his hand at homebrewing — twice. Reportedly, both experiments came out drinkable.
“The first time, I was prepared to dump it down the drain, but it was actually drinkable,” he says. “It was a brown ale. Then, some kind of IPA was the second one. I surprised myself with how they turned out.”
Regardless of his success, he hasn’t brought his gear down to the shore with him.
“I didn’t even think to bring it,” he says.
An Eagles fan, Mitch is also a gamer, watching a fair amount of competitive video gaming.
“I’m more of a Halo guy,” he says. “I dabble with Super Smash Bros., tho. I was third-best in the state of West Virginia at Super Smash Bros. Melee for a brief year.”
As for music, Mitch likes lofi — a sort of ambient, rhythmic genre of music, excellent for relaxation.
“That’s about all I listen to on my own these days,” he says. “It’s good studying.”
When he’s not gaming or zoning out to lofi, Mitch likes skydiving and is currently working on getting his license.
Apparently, there are a few ways of becoming a licensed skydiver, but Mitch is in an accelerated freefall training program, so-called because the progression is the fastest way to experience solo freefall.
“It’s seven jumps with each jump getting progressively more independent,” he says. “So, the first one, you have two instructors holding onto you, but by jump four or five, you’ve only got one guy, and he might not hold onto you.”
He usually jumps at Perkasie Airport in Pennsylvania, although there’s also a skydiving center at Cross Keys Airport, which is a little closer to Cape May.
We should open one at the Cape May Airport, because it sounds totally safe to go drinking at a brewery then jump out of an airplane.
“I think the insurance would probably be pretty steep,” he laughs.
Before Cape May Brewing Company, Mitch worked for a marketing firm for less than a month, and, last summer, worked as a camp counselor in Readfield, Maine, about an hour outside of Portland.
“I spent my summer up there,” he says. “It was really beautiful.”
However, working with kids was not up Mitch’s alley, so he was looking to move on. He enjoyed his limited experience with homebrewing, and, when Kristen mentioned to him that we needed summer help on the canning line, he jumped at the chance.
“An application and an interview later, here I am,” he says.
Mitch hasn’t yet gotten the chance to explore Cape May — it sounds like we’re going to have to get him to, at the very least, some of the bars on Beach Ave. if not to the beaches. However, he loves the Jersey Shore, spending most of his time in Stone Harbor and Avalon.
“I love it,” he says. “People who’ve never been love to hate it, because some people love to hate on Jersey. But I love it.”
But Mitch is certainly loving his time here.
“I enjoy what I’m doing right now,” he says. “I’d like to keep my foot in the door, so-to-speak, learn as much as I can, keep gaining knowledge, and learn more about the brewing process.”
He also enjoys the atmosphere and company culture around here.
“I think this is the first time when I wake up, I don’t dread coming to work,” he says.
“The bosses are excellent,” prods Brandon.
“And the bosses are excellent,” Mitch laughs.
So, what’s his favorite Cape May Brewing Company beer?
“Crushin’ It,” he replies, completely without hesitation. “I don’t notice the alcohol when I’m drinking it until I’m about two or three deep.
“And it’s a really good flavor, too. I should probably throw that in there.”
Be sure to say hello to Mitch if you run into him in the Tasting Room… or falling from the sky!