Bernie Brewer is the official mascot for the Milwaukee Brewers. The idea for Bernie Brewer came from a fan. Milt Mason was the original “Bernie the Brewer” who camped in a trailer on top of the Brewer’s scoreboard in 1970. The 69-year-old man said he would not come down until a crowd of 40,000 came to a game.
On bat day, August 16, 1970, 44,387 people showed up for a game and “Bernie” came down off of his perch. But, the idea of Bernie Brewed did not go away and a cheerful character with a big mustache started appearing at Brewers games in 1970. He was so popular that the Brewers built him a chalet (in the shape of a beer barrel) in the outfield bleacher seats. Bernie would slide down a big slide into a beer mug to celebrate home runs and Brewers victories.
Bernie visited with and entertained fans at the ballpark until 1984, when the Brewers remodeled the outfield bleacher seats, got rid of Bernie’s “chalet,” and sent Bernie down to AAA ball.
But, Brewer fans don’t forget and they loved Bernie. So, in 1993 Bernie was brought back up from the Brewers farm system wearing a large lederhosen costume and having a large foam head with a big shaggy yellow mustache. The chalet was taken out of storage and rebuilt. The beer mug that the original Bernie the Brewer used to slide into was not returned but can be found on display if you take a tour of the Lakefront Brewery in Milwaukee.
When the Brewers moved to Miller Park in 2001, Bernie’s chalet became Bernie’s Dugout and can be found above the bleachers in left field where Bernie does his cheering when he is not out among the Brewer fans. Today, when Bernie slides down a yellow plastic slide it is not into a beer mug but rather onto a home plate-shaped platform where he celebrates home runs and Brewers victories.