SPECIAL BREW: Beer For Elders

Beer. Senior Citizens. The two do not normally go together, but both will go hand-in-hand in the Quad Cities starting this weekend.

On Saturday, Great River Brewery officially tapped its new Owney Irish Red Ale. What makes this beer so special is proceeds from every pour go to the Center for Active Seniors – CASI – in Davenport.

“We love to give back,” says Dawn Lehnert, Marketing and Public Relations Director of Great River Brewery. “We want to be part of a community and give back to things we really like.”

CASI’s Marketing Coordinator, Sarah Arp, told WQAD the idea began brewing when she was drinking a beer at Great River Brewery with her boss last summer.

“I just thought how cool it would be to make money for a non-profit by selling a beer,” says Sarah.

CASI has provided programs and activities for seniors for 40 years, but as more non-profits struggle to find funding, Sarah says they’ve been trying to find new ways to raise money.

“We have to take care of our seniors, because they took care of us,” says Sarah. “No one is getting younger and the needs are growing and services and demands are definitely growing as well.”

With CASI’s biggest fundraiser of the year, the St. Patrick’s Day Race, just a week away, the timing of the tapping couldn’t be better.

“We knew that it was going to be around St. Patrick’s Day, so they wanted to do like an Irish style and then we came up with the Owney Irish Red,” says Dawn.

Owney is the old Irish name for elderly, but brewer Trevor Krutzfeldt says there is nothing old about the new brew.

“A lot of love and dedication went into this beer,” says Trevor. “It’s just a sweet Irish red, very easy to drink.”

It’s also a very easy way to give back.

“Everyone has a senior in their life no matter who you are, so just get a beer and raise your glass to the senior in your life and thank them and know that you’re doing something good,” says Sarah.

Next Saturday will be CASI’s St. Patrick’s Day 5-K Race.

Thanks to sister station, WQAD.


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