Exterior photo of Springfield Brewing Company
Springfield Brewing Company, located in downtown Springfield for 25 years, is preparing to expand its operations to Willard. SBC and Ty Iechyd Da, its sister distillery, have announced plans to open a tap and tasting room in Willard. (Photo by Sony Hocklander)

Willard residents will have a new place to gather and sip locally made craft beer and spirits.

Springfield Brewing Company and Ty Iechyd Da, its sister distillery, announced plans to open a production facility and tasting room in the town just northwest of Springfield. The new business will be located adjacent to the Frisco Highline Trail in the “mural building” owned by Ozark Greenways.

“We are thrilled that such a prominent organization like Springfield Brewing Company has identified Willard as the location for this new enterprise,” Willard Mayor Samuel Snider said in a press release. “SBC’s plan to re-purpose the mural building along the historic Frisco Highline Trail is exciting not only for locals but also for the thousands of people who recreate on the trail throughout the year.”

Springfield Brewing Company has been in business for 25 years in the downtown neighborhood. The brewery has won 13 medals from the Great American Beer Festival and two World Beer Cup medals. It hopes to experiment with different fermentations that they have been unable to try in its main brewing facility.

“As a result, customers will hopefully be able to experience some unique and creative brews, available exclusively at the new Willard/Frisco tap room,” the press release said.

SBC purchased Missouri Spirits in 2020 and launched Ty Iechyd Da (pronounce “Tea-Yah-Key-Dah”), which is Welsh for “House of Cheers.” It produces small-batch, limited-release spirits including gin, liqueurs, rum and whiskey. In 2022, Ty Iechyd Da won two American Distilling Institute medals, a Silver Medal for Spirit Excellence for its Double Barrel Rum and a Bronze Medal for Package Excellence for its Ozark Mountain Daredevils Gin.

There are no plans to produce food at the tap and tasting room, which does not yet have an official name. In a Facebook post, Springfield Brewing Company said renovations will begin later this year, with the goal of opening to the public in the spring of 2024.

“This is a wonderful opportunity to bolster Willard’s role as a ‘trail town’ by promoting revitalization of their main street by growing small businesses opportunities and outdoor recreation tourism that supports residents and visitors alike,” Mary Kromrey, Ozark Greenways’ executive director said in the press release.

Jeff Kessinger

Jeff Kessinger is the Reader Engagement Editor for the Springfield Daily Citizen, and the voice of its daily newsletter SGF A.M. He covered sports in southwest Missouri for the better part of 20 years, from young athletes to the pros. The Springfield native and Missouri State University alumnus is thrilled to be doing journalism in the Queen City, helping connect the community with important information. He and wife Jamie daily try to keep a tent on the circus that is a blended family of five kids and three cats. More by Jeff Kessinger