​Finding Ways to Tie A Brewery Into A Community

Being more than just an establishment for people to consume beer is on the minds of many craft breweries across the country. ​Connecting with locals and tying into the community is an important asset as well.

“One of our core values at Ska Brewing and Ska Street is ‘community reigns supreme’ and since each and every community felt and still feels the impact of the COVID pandemic it is incumbent upon us all to dig deep and help rebuild and restore,” explained Katie Nierling, GM for Ska Street Brewstillery.

Schlafly Beer has a longstanding relationship with St. Louis’ popular Tower Grove Park, the public park, and arboretum. In September 2020, as restaurants, breweries, and non-profit organizations — such as the public park — were struggling due to the pandemic, Schlafly announced the release of Park Lager, a new beer to benefit and celebrate the legacy spot in St. Louis.

The beer was brewed with the park’s horticulture team in mind and pays homage to the historic sites across all of its 289-acres with iconic spots featured on each of the four cans included in the 4-pack. Everything from the grains to the honey and hops was intentionally crafted to encourage enthusiasts to enjoy time in nature and to appreciate all that the public park has to offer.

READ MORE: How Alternate Ending​ Created a Unique Look to Tap Into Its Community

“St. Louis is home to the American Lager, so the brewery took inspiration from that for the various grains in the beer and added a touch of honey malt for sweetness and character, as well as to offer a nod to the park’s beekeeping and honey program,” explained company spokesperson Lauren Shelley. The beer includes Chinook to bring a bit of woody/piney notes to reference the park’s trees and Hallertau Blanc for an aromatic floral component like the flowers in the park.

Tower Grove Park relies on memberships to support the park, and Schlafly launched Park Lager as a giveback to the space. Schlafly matched all membership dollars from September 2020, through the end of the year to help the park while fundraising was minimal.

​As many families struggled to put food on the table, both Ska Brewing and Ska Street partnered with local non​-​profits for a holiday-themed food drive.

In Boulder​, ​Ska partnered with The Boulder Emergency Family Assistance ​Association (EFAA) to collect food and personal care items that were much needed. Boulder-based​ business Skratch Labs also jumped in to co-sponsor and engage both ​the Ska customer base and their​ own​ to garner as much participation as possible.

​”​To this day we consider EFAA integral to the Boulder community and we will continue to trumpet their contribution to our community and see out ways to partner together​, ​never neglecting that families of all backgrounds find themselves in need for no reason and many reasons​,” Nierling said.​

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