On Friday (May 20th), SweetWater Brewing Company and the Black Warrior Riverkeeper, along with sponsors Mountain High Outfitters and Silverock Cove, combined efforts once again for their annual Save the Black Warrior campaign.
Between the dates of May 20th and July 10th, you will be able to participate in the Save the Black Warrior program by visiting your favorite beer friendly bars/restaurants in Birmingham and Tuscaloosa to purchase a paper fish for $1, $5, or $10 (click here for a full list of participating businesses). You can even take it a step further and purchase a custom made Save the Black Warrior t-shirt to raise funds and much needed awareness to the program and the mission of the Black Warrior Riverkeeper. Funds donated to the Black Warrior Riverkeeper go toward supporting their environmental work and patrolling effort.
The Black Warrior Riverkeeper’s mission is to protect and restore the Black Warrior River and its tributaries. They are a citizen-based, nonprofit organization dedicated to improving water quality, habitat, recreation, and public health throughout their patrol area. The Black Warrior serves as a major source of Birmingham and Tuscaloosa’s drinking water supply, but the river is constantly in danger due to coal mining near the Black Warrior causing pollution. Due to these pollution issues, Charles Scribner, Executive Director of Black Warrior Riverkeeper, says, “This year’s Save the Black Warrior program is especially relevant because it starts just three days after American Rivers selected the Black Warrior for its 2011 list of Most Endangered Rivers.”
Since the partnership began back in 2008, SweetWater Brewing Company has helped raise over $30,000 for the Black Warrior Riverkeeper’s protection efforts of the Black Warrior watershed. SweetWater runs similar campaigns with other members of the Waterkeeper Alliance throughout the South, and they have even created Waterkeeper Hefeweizen Ale this year specifically to raise awareness and funds for the many Waterkeeper organizations with which they collaborate. I am sure Waterkeeper Hefeweizen will be making its rounds at the participating bars and restaurants throughout the Save the Black Warrior campaign.
If you are unable to participate in the Save the Black Warrior program by visiting these participating businesses, you can also go to the Save the Black Warrior website to make a donation. While there, you can also register to win an Arc’teryx jacket (a $349 value) donated by sponsor Mountain High Outfitters.
This is a great event to get involved in because it is easy and it has large impact on protection efforts. We all have plenty of time during the Save the Black Warrior campaign to make it down to our favorite, local bar to buy a paper fish and enjoy a pint of SweetWater brew all in the name of protecting one of Alabama’s environmental beauties. Remember, we all must do our part to help the Black Warrior Riverkeeper protect that which is so vital to us. Prost!