SAN DIEGO—Today marks the start of a year-long campaign during which more than 20 San Diego County craft brewing companies will produce beers to raise funds in support of lupus research and awareness as part of the newly established Beer to the Rescue charity initiative. Founded and coordinated by San Diego-based journalist and All About Beer Magazine contributor Brandon Hernández, the campaign will consist of more than two-dozen special events celebrating the release of individual beers brewed specifically so that a portion of proceeds from their sale can be donated to the Lupus Foundation of Southern California (LFSC).
After several years of life-impacting suffering, Hernández was diagnosed with lupus in 2014. Rather than simply be a victim, he decided to invoke the strength of San Diego’s renowned brewing community to make a positive difference for people living with lupus. “Most people have heard about lupus or know someone who suffers from it, but few know anything beyond the name of this autoimmune disease—what it is, its effect on those who have it or the fact that it is severely under-researched,” says Hernández. “This needs to change and, thanks to the compassion, energy and generosity of the craft breweries participating in Beer to the Rescue, 2015 holds a great deal of promise for those so ably assisted by the LFSC and the positive initiatives the agency is integrally involved with.”
“The LFSC has been in operation for 20 years, and because no one really talks about lupus—even people who have lupus—it’s hard to get people involved with our organization,” says LFSC Executive Director Hollaine Hopkins. “In San Diego, Imperial and Riverside Counties alone, there are over 20,000 people suffering from lupus, nine out of 10 of which are women diagnosed between the ages 17 and 40. We hope this campaign gets younger people discussing these events and helps us raise awareness about the LFSC and lupus one-on-one and via social media.”
The following is a list of the brewing companies participating in the Beer to the Rescue campaign. Most will produce beers, while others with more limited brewing capacity will take part in various other ways such as donations, special events and making the LFSC a featured charity at their public venues.
- 32 North Brewing Co., Miramar
- AleSmith Brewing Co., Miramar
- Amplified Ale Works, Pacific Beach
- Aztec Brewery, Vista
- Bagby Beer Co., Oceanside
- Ballast Point Brewing & Spirits, Little Italy
- Benchmark Brewing Co., Grantville
- Bolt Brewery, La Mesa
- Coronado Brewing Co., Coronado
- Council Brewing Co., Kearny Mesa
- Green Flash Brewing Co., Mira Mesa
- Intergalactic Brewing Co., Miramar
- Iron Fist Brewing Co., Vista
- Lightning Brewery, Poway
- Mike Hess Brewing Co., North Park
- Monkey Paw Pub & Brewery, East Village
- Mother Earth Brew Co., Vista
- New English Brewing Co., Sorrento Valley
- Nickel Beer Co., Julian
- Pizza Port, Solana Beach
- Port Brewing Co. / The Lost Abbey / The Hop Concept, San Marcos
- Rip Current Brewing Co., San Marcos
- Societe Brewing Co., Kearny Mesa
- Stone Brewing Co., Escondido
- Toolbox Brewing Co., Vista
- URBN St. Brewing Co., El Cajon
The first beer to be released as part of the Beer to the Rescue campaign will be Hildegard, a triple India pale ale (IPA) lent to the cause by Benchmark Brewing Company. The beer will debut during a release event at the company’s tasting room (6190 Fairmount Avenue, Suite G, San Diego, CA 92120) beginning at 1 p.m. on Saturday, January 31. LFSC representatives will be on-hand to speak with patrons and the beer will be served in a commemorative glass guests may take home with them.
Other upcoming beers include a Belgian-style quadrupel from Nickel Beer Co., a dry-hopped Belgian-style table beer brewed with rhubarb from Monkey Paw Pub & Brewery, and an imperial milk stout infused with chocolate, orange and spicy chilies from Ballast Point Brewing & Spirits.
Information about future beers and their availability as well as Beer to the Rescue events will be posted on the campaign’s Facebook page and via its Twitter account (@BeerToTheRescue). The LFSC and participating breweries will also post information about beers and events on their websites and social media accounts. Beers are scheduled to release one-or-two per month through December, with at least three breweries releasing beers during the month of May in honor of Lupus Awareness Month.
About the Lupus Foundation of Southern California
The Lupus Foundation of Southern California is a 501(c)(3) non-profit health agency. Originated as a small support group for local lupus patients, it gradually grew to become the San Diego Chapter of The American Lupus Society (TALS) in 1976. In August of 1996, TALS merged with the Lupus Foundation of America (LFA). Since then, the agency has operated under the name Lupus Foundation of Southern California (LFSC). The LFSC is a patient-oriented, non-profit, volunteer health agency that provides information, education and referrals for those affected by lupus. Various support groups are held throughout San Diego and Imperial Counties, and quarterly seminars are held covering topics that are pertinent to people with lupus. They are always free and open to the public. The LFSC also lobbies for and funds additional lupus-related research in an effort to provide increased awareness, education and treatment options for people with lupus.