The Beer Grotto was abuzz with activity last Friday at the outset of the Independence Day weekend as Dark Horse Brewing Company employees joined their counterparts at Dexter’s newest beer biz in kicking off a month-long effort to support the Alliance of the Great Lakes.
The fundraising drive will financially support the Alliance’s water conservation efforts one beer at a time, since every Dark Horse beer sold in July will generate a $1 donation to the non-profit.
Dark Horse Beer Ambassador Patrick O’Rorke said the partnership between the Marshall, Michigan brewery and The Beer Grotto was a natural one. The two businesses realized quickly they had more than craft beer in common.
“We realized that we both shared similar ideology,” he said.
When the two sat down to brainstorm a non-profit organization to donate to, water was an obvious choice.
“It was the first thing that came to my mind – clean water,” O’Rorke said.
Michigan produces 825,103 gallons of beer every year and ranks sixth in the nation for craft beer production, according to the Brewer’s Association. One of the main ingredients in brewing beer, O’Rorke said, and access to healthy and clean water is part of what helps Michigan’s vibrant craft scene stand out.
“Brewers can’t brew world-class beer without world-class water,” he said. “Craft beer in Michigan wouldn’t exist if it wasn’t for access to clean water.”
Alliance of the Great Lakes helps to conserve the five Great Lakes by undertaking clean up efforts and providing education projects throughout the region and state.
“It feels good to sell beer, to drink beer and know that $1 from every pint will to go help to protect the Great Lakes,” he said.
Dexter seemed to agree with O’Rorke, as the downtown-based bar was full of people enjoying craft beer and listening to local musician Conversing With Owls.
“We’re totally slammed,” said Jake VanAtta, director of marketing for the Beer Grotto.
Check out a video of local musician Conversing With Owls preforming at the event below:
Dark Horse brought several limited beers to The Beer Grotto for the evening including Crooked Tree, Double Crooked Tree, Falconers Flight Crooked Tree, Apollo Crooked Tree and Cascade Crooked Tree. The brewery will also be bringing in rotating specials throughout July.
The fundraiser is occurring at all three Beer Grotto locations — Dexter, Ann Arbor and Lansing — for the duration of July.