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Surly taps into our essential humanity to host food drive at liquor stores

Look for the food drive's collection bins at participating Twin Cities liquor stores through the end of April – captured here at Morelli's.

Look for the food drive's collection bins at participating Twin Cities liquor stores through the end of April – captured here at Morelli's. Sarah Brumble

Most of us have encountered those infographics floating around the web that scream about how many slices of bread are in just! one! beer! 

Such information ranks among the least helpful out there for a bunch of reasons, including setting up a false equivalence between beer and food. Just as some turkey and cheese pressed between a six pack of Hamm’s would never pass for a sandwich, Surly serves (quite good) pizza upstairs at its brewery complex for good reason.

This is also why Surly’s charitable arm, Surly Gives a Damn, teamed up with local nonprofit The Food Group to capitalize on the essential nature of local liquor stores to provide meals—not beer— to hungry Minnesotans during this unprecedented time of need.

The alliance hopes to collect roughly 1,000 pounds of food—enough to make 800 meals—before April’s end.

The idea involves shoppers heading to one of 10 participating liquor stores across the Twin Cities next time we replenish our liquid kitties, bringing with us food items for donation. Shoppers should drop those non-perishables in The Food Group’s giant blue bins, then snap a photo of a prominent QR code on the bin.

In exchange for caring for their fellow man, participants will receive a coupon for a free pint at the Surly Beer Hall (redeemable when the mother ship’s doors reopen) via that QR code.

“The need to provide meals to our community has never been greater,” said Mary Sellke, executive director of Surly Gives A Damn. “We’d love to see the bins filled every day of the emergency food drive so we make sure more Minnesotans know where their next meal will come from. I know we can do this during our essential supply runs, and then by staying home.”

The emergency food drive will run through the end of April. Look for donation bins at Central Avenue Liquors; Dinkytown Wine & Spirits; Elevated Beer, Wine & Spirits (Minneapolis and White Bear Lake locations); France 44 Wines & Spirits; Minnehaha Lake Wine & Spirits; Morelli’s; Sentyrz Liquor & Supermarket; Stinson Wine, Beer & Spirits; and Surdyk’s Liquor & Cheese Shop.

To that, we raise a glass of not-bread to… a good deed in a weary world? Cheers to giving a damn!




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