The Grand Tetons, WY
After a good 30-mile hike on the Appalachian Trail or jelly leg day spent skiing the steeps of Taos Ski Valley, it's almost a no-brainer to pop open a can of craft beer. That is, unless you have been determined to stick to your goal of cutting back on alcohol consumption or cutting it out all together.
Your adventure buddies will nudge you to have a drink and even buy them at your refusal. And deep down, you are hoping that someone gets it. That you came out to play in the mountains, and that was rewarding enough. Though it's tempting, you are trying your hardest to stick to water and non-alcoholic beverages. It is a game of self-determination and will. You find yourself in love with the outdoor industry and overwhelmed by free beer.
It's trade show season, and you start wishing there were more tasty alternatives offered to those who don't drink alcohol in social situations.
Mt. rainier national park
The taste of beer is good. We live in an era where delicious craft beer is plentiful, and the treasure hunt of new breweries makes for a delighted modern-Twain. And while we know this to be true, we can also say that not partaking to the craft in an industry dwelling among good brew can be a stand-alone effort. The Outdoor/ Ski Industry, that is.
I recently read Leslie Barrett's article about turning down alcoholic drinks at outdoor trade shows. Going on her fifth year of sobriety, she has some valid concern. Not only does she point out feeling the effects of being the minority at the party but also that there are not enough non-alcoholic beverages offered to those who do not consume alcohol.
Snowy Woods of New Mexico
It takes a lot of self discipline to refuse free quality beer, just downright plain and simple. A free Bud Light is easy to turn away, but a complimentary Mocha Stout brewed days before it's handout is another story. It goes deeper than the alcohol. In itself, craft beer is a craft and becomes a sort of cherished nectar from the Gods.
What If... a new market could be right over the horizon. With companies like Blue Sky Beverage Co, and the well renowned Jones Soda Co, it seems like a no-brainer for vendors at trade shows and other Outdoor Industry events to offer an alternative to complimentary craft beer. Let's show some camaraderie to our fellow outdoor adventurers who choose not to partake and make it more of a standard to toss a soda to those on the fence. High-Five their effort!
Moraine lake, alberta, canada
And it's no biggie to pack in a Nalgene full of the most underated beverage of all time- H2O.
In times when depression, anxiety, and suicide are at an all time high, how refreshing would it be to offer up some craft soda to our friends not consuming on the trade show floors and outdoor events. Though we all praise water, it's nice to reward yourself with a carbonated flavored beverage in social situations. We boast beer so much that it seems like the norm. Let's boast the alternative just as equally and promote an outdoors theme around the reason we're really all coming together- For the Love of all that is Mountain!
BIG SUR, CA
High-Fives all around to both those enjoying a fresh craft beer and those choosing not to partake and sticking with personal goals!
And High-Five to adventure! Let's continue to celebrate the mountains all around us that bring us together in the Outdoor/ Ski Industry- the reason we're all here in the first place.