Kelli Gibbs & Tadd Fuhrman
Kelli grew up in Townsend and graduated from Broadwater High School in 1999. After high school, she went on to attend the University of Montana (Go GRIZ!) in Missoula. In 2003 she graduated with a degree in Health & Human Performance. She continued her schooling in Athens, Georgia to graduate with a Master's in Exercise Physiology from the University of Georgia. She later finished her schooling with a Physician Assistant degree from South University in Savannah, Georgia .
Tadd , a 4th generation Montanan from Opheim, graduated from the University of Montana with a degree in Business Management and Marketing.
Tadd's passion for craft beer and Kelli's knack for recipe creation came together while traveling sampling craft beer and gourmet food. The idea for Canyon Ferry Brewing was born. Subsequent courses at Portland State and a brewing internship at Imagine Nation Brewing in Missoula brought opening a business into reality.
Canyon Ferry Brewing was created out of the view from the "flats" Kelli enjoyed growing up in Townsend.
It was something to brag about when in about 1882 Thomas Dixon established a full scale brewery for the manufacture of fine beer. Dixon's "Primrose" gained its reputation because of the pure mountain water and Gallatin malt. It proved to be of such excellent quality that his famous brand of "Primrose" was known in many parts of the territory and a ready sale was the result.
Thomas Dixon numbered among the first businessmen in Townsend and was ready to get one of the first corner lots and build a structure for a saloon. It was one of the finest bars in the northwest, created from very fine cherry and extravagant mirrors and back bar.
The Dixon Brewery was a popular place in the horse and buggy days, many driving out for a few hours of relaxation and to test the beer on a hot Sunday afternoon.
Today, Kelli and Tadd honor the tradition of Dixon's original brewery by crafting a selection of beers that keep with the Montana tradition of excellence. The current location of Canyon Ferry Brewing is the original site of Dixon's saloon.