When looking back at all that transpired in the TWIF universe last year, there are many memories that were forged in the fire of good times. While it would be easy to point to the TWIF 5 Year Anniversary Party / Dand’s Day event as a no-brainer (I mean, when was the last time you had bands and a bonfire on a beach that could probably be spotted from space and a beach full of people singing Happy Birthday to you?) the event that topped 2014 as my favorite was Beer Camp.
Beer events are normally right in TWIF’s wheelhouse, given our partnership with our friends at Ninkasi, but this one was different as we took TWIF on the road. It was part Jack Kerouac and part Bear Grylls—a Friday afternoon foray through the mountains over to Winthrop where a dedicated crew of volunteers was set to camp out for two nights and help at the Winthrop Beer Festival on Saturday.
What made this event special? TWIF generally confines itself to the Greater Puget Sound but for the first time we were spreading out, taking our gig on the road and showing the state of Washington how you can transform volunteering from something arduous to something that puts a smile on your face to the point where you have to pinch yourself to confirm you’re volunteering.
The weather was beautiful, the company was better and the 1st Annual Winthrop Beer Festival went off flawlessly with the seasoned pros of TWIF providing guidance. Our road trip back to Seattle included a mini golf tournament and an animal petting zoo stop with lemurs. There aren’t many volunteer opportunities that combine beer, mini golf and lemurs and this is why the Beer Camp stands as my favorite TWIF event of 2014.
-Josh P. Dand is a TWIF Board Member and Vice President