Sen. Tom Carper visited Painted Stave Distilling in Smyrna on Sept. 13 for a tour of the facility.

Painted Stave Distilling, once it opens, will be Delaware's first standalone craft distillery. The business is located in the Old Smyrna Theater at 106 W. Commerce St. in downtown Smyrna.

The 6,300-square foot distillery will have a broad offering of unaged and barrel-aged products including gin, vodka, brandy and liquors. The business will offer tours, tastings and sales.

Sen. Carper stopped by the facility to check on how things are going for the future business and to see if he can be of any help. Throughout the tour, Carper asked several questions and even took a look at the equipment that will be used to make the craft liquors. Carper also learned about the history of the building, which includes time spent as a plumbing supply company.

During the tour, Carper asked Smyrna Town Manager Dave Hugg how the distillery will help Smyrna as far as economic development.

"They won't bring on a lot of employees," Hugg said. "But we're very excited and believe it'll get people to come into downtown [Smyrna]."

Owners Mike Rasmussen and Ron Gomes have been busy over the last few months renovating the Old Smyrna Theater. The two share the building with Ed Ide, president of construction management firm i3a.

Rasmussen and Gomes said during the tour they hope to have the business open and have a grand opening in mid-October.

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