Jay Graham is a big guy.



He has tattoos.



And he loves heavy metal.



So it makes sense — insert sarcasm here — that he asked for a "bunny" to be featured in the logo for his upcoming Magic City Brewing Co. in Barberton.



But this isn’t just any fluffy cottontail.



It’s a hard core hare with piercing purple eyes. Death stare much?



The logo — designed by friend Brian Burmeister — not only matches Graham’s personality, but it also works with Barberton’s Magic City nickname and, obviously, the brewery name.



Magicians pull rabbits out of hats, after all.



To cement the rabbit connection even more, the Magic City slogan is “Join us further down the rabbit hole” — a nod to Alice in Wonderland.



Graham, 32, and his wife Erica, 33, who both grew up in Barberton, are transforming a 4,800-square-foot building on West Tuscarawas Avenue downtown into the city’s first nanobrewery and tasting room.



They hope to open in May, but given the fact that the interior is just a shell right now they realistically know it could be later than that. They are launching an online crowdfunding campaign Saturday (Oct. 1) to raise at least $20,000 for the project.



The plan is to start with a one- or three-barrel brewing system and have eight Magic City beers on draft, with many of those brews rotating.



Graham enjoys all kinds of styles and expects to offer everything from an IPA to a saison to a fruit beer to a stout.



While Barberton is considered a working class city, the Grahams believe the community is ripe for a craft brewery and hope to capitalize on the popularity of craft beer.



Plenty of Ohio towns that are much smaller than Barberton, such as Lisbon, Columbiana and Maria Stein, now sport their own breweries.



The state also is continuing to enjoy a craft beer boom, with more than 190 brewing licenses now issued in Ohio. Some breweries have more than one license.



The Grahams have no aspiration at first to distribute outside the brewery, meaning people will have to come to Barberton to sample the beer.



“Beer lovers will go anywhere to see a cool brewery,” Erica Graham said.



Magic City won’t offer food, but people will be able to bring in their own.



The Grahams are excited to be part of the ongoing redevelopment downtown. Their brewery will be a couple of short bunny hops from the Magical Theatre Company and the Lake 8 Movies Theatre.



“It’s a town right on the cusp of doing something,” said Jay Graham, who has been a homebrewer for a decade and taken inspiration from smaller breweries such as R. Shea Brewing Co. in Akron.



Hannah Gerbec, who owns the building and the nearby Aunt Hannah’s Antiques, also hopes the brewery helps grow downtown.



Erica Graham said it’s been humbling to hear the positive community response to their plan.



“We really want to see Barberton thrive,” she said.



To keep up to date on Magic City and its crowdfunding campaign, click here.