North Bay man looking to turn bottle collection into beer museum

Tony Matheson of North Bay, Ont., has been collecting Canadian beer bottles since he was 18. He now has more than 4,300 bottles in his basement, and they are all still full of beer.

Tony Matheson has 4,300 unopened bottles of beer in his basement

All 4,300 bottles in Tony Matheson's basement in North Bay are full of beer. He also has another 3,000 extras or duplicates that are not on display. (Canadian Beer Collectibles Facebook)
North Bay may be famous for its family of five identical girls ... but there's a new kid on the block. We talk to a full beer collector who plans to start a new museum in the city -- and it will feature his collection of 4,300 bottles. 8:23

Tony Matheson of North Bay has been collecting Canadian beer bottles since he was 18.

He now has more than 4,300 bottles in his basement and they are all still full of beer.

The collection is so significant Matheson hopes, eventually, to use it as the basis for a new beer museum in the city.

When he is not collecting, Matheson is a mission crew commander at the Royal Canadian Air Force. He is only a few years away from retirement and says that's when he wants to focus more on the museum.

But it would be more than just his beer bottles and would be modelled after the Canadian Collectors of Brewery Advertising.

"Whether it's beer openers, beer trays, also known as tip trays, or just paper, anything to do with beer someone is collecting it," he says.

"I think along with my beer bottle collection you know, I could show some of these other collections in that kind of format, would be very, very interesting to a lot of people."

Matheson believes the value of his collection is between $15,000 - $20,000.

The oldest bottle in his collection is a Molson Export from the 1930s.

With files from Wendy Bird