Parks n’ Pints believes in building community, and we believe that community is multi-faceted. Community exists at the neighborhood, city, state, national, and global level. Community is an opportunity to identify similar interests, to come together around a common cause, and to celebrate our differences. Community allows us to give back to the things we believe in, a chance to contribute to the things we hold dear. At Parks n’ Pints we believe in many things, but first and foremost, we believe in the outdoor recreation and nature lover communities. We also recognize that local business is a powerful driver of community, and in particular those associated with beer and brewing. These businesses are now more prevalent than ever at the local level, and are poised to help contribute to the conservation of wild places where we often enjoy these libations.
We firmly contend that the outdoor and beer loving communities are powerful, and that when paired together, could offer infinite opportunities to make a difference in this world. This is why Parks n’ Pints works to bring these communities more closely together to formally make a difference for our natural world. Here is how we will accomplish this:
- Develop a nationwide network of Pint-o-neers who will act as ambassadors for Parks n’ Pints. These Pint-o-neers will develop relationships with breweries and parks in their area. For example, in Manhattan, Kansas, a natural relationship may exist between Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve, and Tallgrass Taphouse; or between Snake River Brewing, and Grand Teton National Park in Jackson, Wyoming; or Saranac Brewing, and Adirondack State Park in New York.
- Partner with local businesses to develop and deliver events. For example, a partnership between a local nature center or science museum (e.g., Flint Hills Discovery Center) and a local brewery or restaurant (e.g., Pool House) has been developed to create a public facing science series called Hops n’ Profs. Hops n' Profs provides an opportunity to promote local businesses, as well as bring people in to learn more about nature conservation based research.
- Partner with local breweries to develop special edition beers. For example, a local brewery (e.g., Radius Brewing in Emporia, Kansas) could develop a beer based on a local park (e.g., El Dorado State Park) with a portion of the proceeds going to Parks n’ Pints.
- Partner with local restaurants and bars to host Parks n' Pints guest taps. Parks n' Pints will provide our custom tap handles, and work with partners to choose beers for which a portion of the proceeds will go to Parks n' Pints.
Proceeds from partnership events and special edition brews that come to Parks n’ Pints will be used to:
- Facilitate research in partner parks and protected areas. This can be identified by the partner brewery, or by staff at Parks n’ Pints. This will mainly be accomplished through additional partnerships with local colleges and universities. For example, a local brewery (e.g., Tallgrass Taphouse) develops a park themed beer (e.g., for Tuttle Creek State Park – Tuttle Creek Lake Lager) with a portion of the proceeds going to Parks n’ Pints. Parks n’ Pints will then partner with a university (e.g., Kansas State University) to offer modest grants to undergraduate and graduate students that will directly benefit the partner park (in this example, Tuttle Creek State Park). Parks n’ Pints will administer and manage the grants to ensure the work is being completed, and that the park receives a report at the end of the proposed project. In this way, Parks n’ Pints will ensure the development of community, while the proceeds from the partnerships go towards protecting our local parks and protected areas. Dr. Ryan Sharp is solidly positioned in the outdoor recreation research community to ensure the success of this program.
- Promote local events and partners (e.g., parks, breweries, restaurants, bars).
- An administrative cost (TBD) will be retained by Parks n’ Pints to cover the work of organizing events and grant administration.
In a time when our natural spaces are underfunded, and often under protected, these partnerships provide a way to help our parks and protected area managers better understand ways to provide high quality visitor experiences while continuing to preserve the special resources contained therein. Parks n’ Pints is dedicated to the mission that only through bringing people together can we continue to protect our special places for this and future generations to enjoy.Cheers, Parks n’ Pints – Ryan and Julie Sharp