Friday, November 18, 2011

Durango Breweries successful in blood drive

The Bootlegger's SocietyWho says breweries don't do public service? The Durango Bootlegger’s Society enjoyed a stellar Pint for Pint blood drive (largest single day blood drive in United Blood Services’ Durango history), which culminated last night with Steamworks brewer Spencer Roper having his hair dyed red. Steamworks rousted the fewest blood donors in the annual competition among the brewers. Please find the press release information attached below. Cheers to Carver Brewing, Durango Brewing, Ska Brewing and Steamworks Brewing!!

Bootleggers team up for successful 9th Annual Pint for Pint blood drive
“Beer for blood” event nets a record 74 units for United Blood Services

DURANGO, Colo. – Continuing with its mission of community support, the Durango Bootlegger’s Society, the local consortium of Durango’s four award-winning craft breweries, hosted a record “Pint for Pint” blood drive on Halloween, adding 74 pints of blood to the United Blood Services reserve.

“This Bootlegger’s Pint for Pint blood drive was the largest in our history of one day blood drives in Durango,” said Charlene Smith of United Blood Services. “We had 62 donors processed resulting in 74 units of life-saving blood. Also, it was the first time this drive surpassed processing 50 donors, so we are extremely pleased and hope to continue to grow this blood drive each year. It’s great to see a community come together to help others.”

Launched in 2003, “Pint for Pint” encourages fans of Durango’s craft brews to donate a pint of blood and receive a voucher for a pint of beer at their favorite local brewery. The breweries – Carver Brewing, Durango Brewing, Ska Brewing and Steamworks Brewing companies – engage in a friendly “competition,” with a representative from the “losing” brewery (the one with the fewest blood donors) required to die their hair red.

“We congratulate Durango Brewing for encouraging the most donors,” said Brian McEachron, Steamworks co-founder, acknowledging that this year Steamworks generated the least – by only a couple of pints. “As of last night, our brewer Spencer Roper is now sporting a new ‘red’ hair-do thanks to Velvet Monkey.”

The Bootleggers originally launched Pint for Pint in response to United Blood Services’ serious need for donors, according to Dave Thibodeau, Ska co-founder.

“Blood was running short and workers were having little success securing donations,” he said. “It didn’t take long for us to conspire and decide a little friendly competition might help raise awareness. We all asked our patrons to donate a pint of blood and, in return, we offered them a pint of beer at their brewery of choice.”

News of the event was picked up by the Associated Press, garnering the Bootleggers national and international attention. Even Jay Leno mentioned Durango and the “beer for blood” drive during one of his opening monologues. The “Pint for Pint” blood drive has since emerged as a “best practice” and been modeled by blood services organizations throughout the country, according to McEachron.

“The notion of ‘beer for blood’ has caught on within blood service industry and the craft brewing community,” said McEachron. “Cascade Regional Blood Services in Tacoma, Wash. has done a number of them and Stone Brewing has modeled the practice. We hear about more events each year.”

The Bootleggers have also led the way in the craft brewing industry for collaborative fundraising by establishing the Durango Bootlegger’s Society Fund under the auspices of the Community Foundation of Southwest Colorado. The fund enables tax-deductible donations.

“The fund is a unique situation that helps to cement our philanthropic footprint in Southwest Colorado,” said Thibodeau. “It has become a model for other small breweries/businesses to emulate in other communities across the country.”

“Collectively we’ve always had a desire to help out the people of our communities who have always supported us,” said McEachron, reminding that the Bootlegger’s mission is to raise the awareness and understanding of craft beer by rallying around the needs of the community.

For further information regarding the Community Foundation of Southwest Colorado, or to contribute to the Bootlegger’s Society Fund on-line, visit

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Related articles:
- Bootleggers Society launch Durango Beer Week.
- Ska Brewing participates in 2011 GABF Events.
- Sky Euphoria Pale Ale review.

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