Pittsburgh, Pa. – April 7 – Sales of a new locally-produced beer will support the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy’s stream bank tree planting initiative.

To celebrate the launch of this new beer, the Conservancy is hosting a happy hour fundraiser at North Country Brewing Company at 141 S. Main Street in Slippery Rock, Pa., from 5 to 7 p.m. on Earth Day, April 22. The event is open to the public. With a $20 donation, guests will receive appetizers and two ale tokens.

The new beer, called Ryeparian Rye Pale Ale, was crafted by Bob and Jodi McCafferty, owners of North Country Brewing Company in Slippery Rock, Pa. and the Harmony Inn in Harmony, Pa. Proceeds from the event, and five percent of Ryeparian Rye Pale Ale sales from across Pennsylvania and portions of Ohio, will support the Conservancy’s stream bank, or riparian, tree plantings in key natural areas in Western Pennsylvania.

Riparian zones are the land adjacent to a stream or river. Maintaining healthy vegetative cover with trees and shrubs along these areas is one of the most effective ways of limiting sediment runoff and other soil disturbances that cause water pollution. WPC planted more than 20,000 riparian trees in 2013 and 2014 to improve water quality in the region.

“North Country Brewing is a great partner. We are so pleased that Bob and his team worked closely with us to create this fundraiser that also highlights their fantastic craft beer,” said Jenifer Christman, WPC’s associate vice president for watershed conservation. “We will use these proceeds to plant riparian trees that will protect streams, and provide valuable wildlife habitat.”

The beer is now available at both restaurants, and will be available in cans at beer distributors across the region starting in May. The Ryeparian Ale logo features a rendering of an Eastern hellbender salamander, which the Conservancy has studied and monitored since 2007. It is an indicator species because it only thrives in streams with high water quality.

WPC’s watershed conservation staff will also lead two riparian tree plantings on April 21 and April 22 at Wolf Creek Narrows Natural Area near Slippery Rock. Groups of 20 to 40 volunteers are needed to assist with each of these plantings, at which staff plans to plant a mixture of 1,400 trees and shrubs across 6.8 acres. Volunteers will meet at 9 a.m. at 180 Miller Road in Slippery Rock and can contact Watershed Conservation Program Administrator Kelly Horrell at 724-471-7202 extension 5100 or khorrell@paconserve.org to RSVP.

The McCaffertys are longtime supporters of WPC’s community garden in Slippery Rock as well as committed conservationists. “To coexist with all life in a clean environment has always been one of my goals. I’m a big fan of the Conservancy’s efforts to achieve that,” said Bob McCafferty.

Established in 2007, the Conservancy’s watershed conservation program offers a full range of services to the community including watershed assessments, watershed conservation plans, stream bank restoration projects, aquatic species surveys and technical assistance for landowners and local watershed organizations.


About the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy:
The Western Pennsylvania Conservancy (WPC) enhances the region’s quality of life by protecting and restoring exceptional places. A private nonprofit conservation organization founded in 1932, WPC has helped to establish ten state parks, conserved more than 235,000 acres of natural lands and protected or restored more than 3,000 miles of rivers and streams. The Conservancy owns and operates Fallingwater, which symbolizes people living in harmony with nature. In addition, WPC enriches our region’s cities and towns through 130 community gardens and other green spaces that are planted with the help of about 12,500 volunteers. The work of the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy is accomplished through the support of nearly 10,000 members. For more information, visit WaterLandLife.org.

Media contact:
Kristen Blevins
The Western Pennsylvania Conservancy
412-586-2328 (office)