“You should have seen the eyes light up around the conference table when we announced in a staff meeting that NRF was going to be getting its own beer,” recalls Nora Simmons, communications director for NRF. For the outdoorsy staff at NRF, marrying great beer with philanthropic support for the great outdoors is a match made in heaven.

Joe Goldfine from Octopi Brewing and Steve Blevins from 105.5 Triple M will tell you that The Giving Brewery beer is made “for the thirsty and thoughtful”. After working with them, it’s easy to see that this beer is also made by thoughtful companies that are embodying a culture of giving back.

The Giving Brewery is a partnership between Octopi Brewing and 105.5 Triple M. Together they create and market exceptional craft brews that support different nonprofit organizations like the Natural Resources Foundation. 105.5 Triple M and Octopi Brewing, work together to find a charity partner, come up with a beer and then market the product to raise awareness for the charity benefiting (all profits are donated to that charity).

NRF collaborated with The Giving Brewery to create Conservation Orange Blossom Honey Blonde. This summer we had a tapping party to promote the beer (watch the video below to see how it went). The funds raised from this effort will be used to support NRF’s mission to connect generations to Wisconsin’s lands, waters, and wildlife through conservation, education, and giving.

“The Foundation is grateful to Octopi Brewery and 105.5 Triple M for partnering with us on this creative endeavor for the thirsty and thoughtful,” said NRF Development Director Camille Zanoni. “The proceeds from this beer will make a measurable impact on the lands, waters and wildlife we all cherish, and we raise our glass to them for the difference they are helping to make.”
 

How did The Giving Brewery start?

The idea for The Giving Brewery was born in the spring of 2017. Later that summer, The Giving Brewery put out its first beer — The Road HoMMMe — which was so successful they decided to grow from selling kegs to selling cans and bottles, while also reaching out to more nonprofits.

The idea behind The Giving Brewery is the importance of giving back to the community. Instead of simply donating a check, Octopi and 105.5 wanted to create a bigger way of giving back.

Joe said it’s been exciting to work with different initiatives he wasn’t aware of before. Steve said that was also a goal they had for the first year — to confront issues across all realms of society by identifying needs like homelessness and conservation and then trying to make the biggest difference.

“In the beginning, we reached out to charities we thought meant something to us personally,” Joe said. “Now we’re reaching beyond the horizon to see what’s next.”

What’s next for The Giving Brewery?

The Giving Brewery will collaborate with two more nonprofits this year: The Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin, a charity combating hunger, and Fetch Wisconsin Rescue, a dog rescue organization.

“We’re trying to find new ways to grow, better ways to help out, and get more people involved,” Steve said.

NRF’s collaboration with The Giving Brewery has been quite successful thus far. Joe said the Conservation Honey Blonde has done exceptionally well. It’s been quite popular with NRF members and sold out of many distribution locations within weeks of launching.

“Working with the Natural Resources Foundation and Camille and the rest of the folks over there was just fantastic,” Joe said.

We couldn’t agree more. Cheers to Conservation!

Post contributed by Hibah Ansari, communications and programs assistant.

Students experience nature untouched by humans at Isle Royale

The Natural Resources Foundation helped fund trip for seventh graders from Phillips Middle School to Isle Royale. Students learn about renewable energy, environmental stewardship, earth science, and history as well as picking up the basics of camping and leave-no-trace ethics.

Nature and Mental Health

Spending time in nature has a physiological effect on the body, reducing blood pressure and the hormone cortisol, which is associated with stress. Thus, our time in nature serves to lessen stress and refresh our brains, improving focus, creativity and problem-solving.

Prairie restoration at Faville Prairie SNA

Faville Prairie is a highly diverse prairie with over 200 native prairie plants, but in recent years, invasive shrubs and trees have invaded the remnant prairie resulting in a loss of native species diversity. With support from the Natural Resources Foundation, the Arboretum worked with Tallgrass Restoration, LLC, to remove about eight acres of invasive shrubs and trees as part of a prairie restoration at Faville Prairie SNA.

Kestrel Banding with the Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin

The Natural Resources Foundation’s kestrel banding Field Trip is a long-time favorite. These trips are so popular that it can be hard to get a spot. Fortunately, one incredible Field Trip participant put together an amazing slideshow to share his experience. 

Diversity in Conservation

The natural world is something that every person living in Wisconsin has a right to enjoy. Historically, however, the underprivileged and people of color have not had the same opportunities to access the outdoors when compared to more privileged communities. We are committed to removing barriers so that every Wisconsinite has a chance to connect with nature.

Importance of bat monitoring to saving Wisconsin’s bats

White-nose syndrome is devastating Wisconsin bat populations, decreasing them by as much as 98% in some locations. Volunteer bat monitors are helping Wisconsin DNR and other groups to assess the impact and, hopefully, save our bats.

Wisconsin’s School Forests Celebrate 90 Years

On a bright, spring fifth of May – like today, but 90 years ago – a small group of students in Laona, Wisconsin planted a tree in a forsaken area outside of town. In 1928, the land around the logging town had been subjected to great deforestation.

Kirtland’s Warbler Recovery, Ongoing Efforts

The US Fish and Wildlife Service has proposed to remove the Kirtland’s warbler from the federal endangered species list. Most of us in the conservation community greet news of a species being removed from the endangered species list with mixed emotions.

Western Great Lakes Bird and Bat Observatory

For mission-based organizations like Western Great Lakes Bird and Bat Observatory, time equals impact. Less time spent fundraising means more time spent fulfilling your mission. An endowment fund is the most valuable asset any mission-based organization can have, because it provides steady, reliable, and growing funds.

Saving the Endangered Rusty Patched Bumble Bee

One of the newest additions to the Endangered Species Act is found right here in Wisconsin: the rusty patched bumble bee (Bombus affinis) was added to the Endangered Species List on March 21, 2017, making it the first bee in history to be designated as an endangered species.