By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published May 17, 2022 at 11:29 AM

Over the past few years, Black Husky Brewing has partnered with the City of Milwaukee’s Department of Public Works to brew a special beer flavored with spruce tips from the city holiday tree.

The resulting Sproose beer has become a popular holiday tradition.

This past season, the partnership climbed to a new level as the two entities welcomed a third.

Eagle-based tree carver Bob Younger was on hand for the removal of the tree Downtown in January and he took sections of it to transform into four wood sculptures.

Those sculptures will be auctioned off Saturday May 21, from noon to 6 p.m. at Saws & Suds at Black Husky, 909 E. Locust St.
Proceeds from the auction will benefit the Milwaukee Urban Forestry fund, which plants trees all around the city.

Artists Bob and Kai McNulty will also be at the event creating additional carvings, and other urban wood-related vendors and crafters, including Urban Wood Lab, ABCraftery, The Urban Craftsman, Inland Seas Woodcraft and Urban Wood Network-WI, will also be on hand.

“We carve, doing events like this,” Younger said, referring to himself and the McNultys. “And if possible, they'll do a couple pieces out of (the holiday tree) prior to the event and then we'll use what's left at the event. Then we'll bring in some more logs.

“It'll be chainsaw carvings. Who knows what we'll have. We have free rein pretty much, but I'm sure you'll see a couple of bears.”

The Younger sculptures are on view now in the Black Husky taproom where you can also find silent auction bid sheets. The auctions close at 5 p.m. on Saturday, May 21.

“The positive holiday spirit lives on because of some great partners here,” said Mayor Cavalier Johnson in a statement. “The creativity and imagination behind this work is admirable.  Thanks to everyone involved.”

If it doesn't sell out immediately upon release on Friday, you might also get to taste a special barrel-aged version of Sproose, too.

More info at the Saws & Suds Facebook event page.

Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.

He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.

With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.

He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.

In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.

He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.