Ales for ALS™ is a program that allows brewers and beer lovers across the country to support a worthy cause – ending ALS. Through Ales for ALS™, brewers craft specialty beers using hops donated from Yakima Chief Hops, and then donate a portion of the proceeds to support ALS research.
To help spread the word about this unique opportunity, Ales for ALS™ National Program Director Mike Shannon, his wife Jan, and their two dogs are embarking on the first-ever Ales Roadtrip Across America! Riding in a newly decked-out Ales for ALS™ RV, they’ll be driving cross country to connect with craft brewers, beer enthusiasts, and everyone passionate about making a difference in the fight to end ALS.
“The idea is, first, to get out across the country and meet brewers in key cities,” says Mike. “We want to increase our following in cities where we have larger numbers of brewers and create more connectivity to brewer communities where we don't have as much notoriety. Second, we want to meet people in these communities that can help us recruit brewers, host events, and to try to build the program and to try to build the program up. Third, we want to build the brand of the program, to make it more ubiquitous and well-known.”
Along the way, Mike and Jan will roll up in their RV to breweries across the country to share drinks with brewers and community members. They will also attend beer release parties and other Ales for ALS™ events, raising awareness of the program wherever they go. Their journey began in November 2023, with visits to brewers in Arizona to Texas. The route will continue through the Southwest with planned stops in Louisiana, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina throughout the winter and fall. From there, they’ll head back West toward Mike and Jan’s home in Spokane, Washington. While they have a general itinerary, Mike and Jan plan to also be spontaneous and follow the road where it takes them – as long as they there’s a delicious pint at the end of the day.
“We’re currently planned out a little more than a month in advance,” says Mike. “And we’re going to keep that up going forward to stay a little ahead of the game, adding key brewers and key people that we’ll be meeting to the schedule.”
Wherever they end up, from big beer festivals to local taprooms, Mike says anyone interested in the Ales for ALS™ program – from brewers, beer lovers, or people whose lives have been touched by ALS – are encouraged to come find the RV and learn more.
“If you see us on the road, at an event, or in your town, come and meet us,” he says. “Come and say hi. We want to encourage anyone in the ALS community, or anyone who just follows the program, to come and be a part of it. If you’re a brewer, we can tell you more about getting hops and joining the program. If you’re a community member, you can help us by recruiting your favorite brewer or by raising money at an event at a brewery.”
Follow the Journey and Get Involved!
- Those interested in following along and seeing when the Ales for ALS™ RV will be rolling through their town can find an updated route at Roadtrippers.com.
- Photo and video updates from the road will also be posted on the @AlesforALS Instagram.
- If the RV is passing through your area, you can get in touch at email@example.com or by tagging @AlesforALS on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to suggest your favorite local brewery or attraction.
The ultimate goal is to grow the Ales for ALS™ program, rallying more support to fund the ALS Therapy Development Institute (ALS TDI) and their groundbreaking research to end ALS. By supporting Ales for ALS™, you become a crucial part of a movement that's making a real impact.
About Ales for ALS™:
Ales for ALS™ is a national fundraising program supporting research at the ALS Therapy Development Institute (ALS TDI). Ales for ALS™ was founded by the family behind the Yakima Chief hop farm in Yakima, WA. Every year, Yakima Chief Hops provides a unique hop blend to brewers around the country, who use these hops to brew a special beer and donate a portion of the proceeds from sales to ALS TDI. Since 2013, Ales for ALS™ has raised more than $5.5 million for ALS research.
About ALS TDI:
The ALS Therapy Development Institute (ALS TDI) is the world's foremost drug discovery lab focused solely on ALS, and one of the world’s only nonprofit biotech companies. Led by drug development experts and people with ALS, their Watertown, Massachusetts-based lab is funded by a global network of supporters unified to end ALS. Their mission is to discover and develop effective treatments for ALS.