Beer Can Appreciation Day | January 24
(Last Updated On: January 20, 2023)


Beer Can Appreciation Day recognizes the great day in 1935 when beer was first sold in cans.


While Krueger Brewing Company of Richmond, Virginia sold the first beer in a can, American Can Company made drinkable canned beer possible. Krueger took the risk with the American Can Company just weeks before the repeal of Prohibition. Weighing in at 4 ounces, the hefty steel cans opened with a church key. Loyal Krueger’s drinkers favored the can over the bottle 9-1.

Click play and enjoy a story about National Beer Can Appreciation Day featuring our founder, Marlo Anderson. If you enjoy the 2-minute show, subscribe with your favorite podcast player.

Significant Dates in Beer Can History
  • 1935 -Cone-Top –  G. Heilemann Brewing Company – La Crosse, WI – Introduces cone-top cans that fit existing bottling lines convenient for small brewers with small budgets.
  • 1963 -Pull Tab – Pittsburgh Brewing Company – Revolutionizes the beer can when it introduces Iron City Beer in self-opening cans with pull tabs, also known as pop tops. With their sharp edges, the pull tabs became the feared litter at beaches, parks, backyards, and anywhere beverages were consumed.
  • 1975 – Stay Tab- Falls City Brewing Company of Louisville, KY introduces the Stay Tab removing the pull tab’s environmental impact.

This day provides people with the opportunity to enjoy and appreciate the many different kinds of beer cans. Around the world, collectors seek rare, novel, and unique varieties. A collector may have hundreds of beer cans in many different sizes, types, and ages.


Enjoy a beer from a can. While you do, explore the art behind the beer can. As more craft beers hit the market, designing the labels become as much an art form as the can and the beer do. Learn more about beer making and the types of craft beer. Tour local breweries. Explore their canning process. As always, invite someone to join you. It is the best way to #CelebrateEveryDay! When you do, use #BeerCanAppreciationDay to post on social media.


While the observances commemorate the beer can’s debut in 1935, National Day Calendar continues searching for the creator of the day. 

Beer Can FAQ

Q. Why is it called a “church key”?
A. The term “church key” for a can opener is used because this tool looks similar to the heavy iron keys that used to be used to lock a church. They also open something, a can, much like a key opens a door. 

Q. Is Beer Can Appreciation Day a beverage or invention holiday?
A. It’s both! Improving the brewing and distribution of beer through the canning process allowed more people to enjoy the beverage. 

Q. Did the development of the beer can impact any other industries?
A. Yes. Once manufacturers developed cans for beer, they were able to begin improving the canning of other beverages such as juice and soda.

January 24th Celebrated (and Not So Celebrated) History


The California Gold Rush begins when contractor James W. Marshall discovers the first gold samples while working for John A Sutter in Coloma, California.


Robert Baden-Powell organizes the first Boy Scout troop in England.


Krueger Brewing Company and American Can Company joined forces to bring the first canned beer to the market.


Percy L. Spencer receives U.S. patent no. 2,495,429 for a “Method of Treating Foodstuffs” otherwise known as the microwave oven.


Discovery launches from Kennedy Space Center on a secret mission deploying an eavesdropping satellite.

January 24th Celebrated (and Not So Celebrated) Birthdays

Maria Tallchief – 1925

In 1947, the professional dancer became the first prima ballerina of the New York City Ballet and is considered America’s first notable prima ballerina.

Neil Diamond – 1941

For more than five decades the singer-songwriter has influenced generations of artists. Hits like “Sweet Caroline,” “Song Sung Blue,” “America,” and “Forever in Blue Jeans” also earned him induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

John Belushi – 1949

In 1975, comedian and actor John Belushi joined six other cast members on the live satirical comedy sketch show Saturday Night Live. He also starred in several movies, sometimes with his brother Jim.

Mary Lou Retton – 1968

In 1984, the American gymnast won gold in the individual all-around competition in the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, California.

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