Local man with autism wraps up yearlong brewery tour

You could call him a beer genius.

Lance Rice possesses encyclopedic knowledge of beer history and rare photographic memory.

For every beer can in Rice's 4,500 can collection, there is a story.

Lance is ready to share his.

It began just over a year ago when his nephew Aaron Rice, a film producer, set out to help his uncle fulfill a 40-year-old dream -- to write a book about the history and culture of American beer.

ONE YEAR AGO: Lance talked to us as he prepared for his brewery tour

Lance is autistic.

Aaron planned to accompany his uncle on research tours of as many midwest brew houses as possible, and spread awareness about autism. But they soon discovered, breweries across the country welcomed Lance and his message about autism with open arms.

So the man who used to never leave his home, traveled 25,000 miles, visiting more than 70 breweries.

Along the way, Lance shared his important message.

"It's about autism," he said. "It's about reaching families and giving them encouragement to be whatever they want to become."

Now that he's home, Lance has begun putting pen to paper, and fulfilling his dream. He's written 66 pages so far.

Lance's nephew figures with all the media interviews he's done in cities across the country -- their positive message has reached 2.5 million people.

And they're not done.

Along with the book, a documentary film of their tour is in the works.

If you'd like to support the effort, visit their website HERE.

Mobile users: www.beerautismhope.com


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