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Atwater Brewery

Ale’s Well That Ends Well! Hightail to Ale 2022 Sustainability Report

Hightail to Ale is one of those iconic examples of the truism, “If you provide beer, they will come.” Held at the Atwater Brewery in Detroit, runners enjoy a 5K along the riverfront, followed by free beer after they finish, along with live music and food from Simply Spanish, Little Caesar’s, and Atwater.

Attendance was down from previous years, but still healthy, and there would be plenty for the Green Team to handle. Along with beer cans, there were snack bags of chips and cookies, water bottles, food waste, plastic wrap from medals, and cardboard from multitudinous boxes.

I set up one station in the parking lot that held the food trucks and the band, and another on the street that served the line for the beer.

Ellen working the station serving the beer line.

So far, so good. But what would an event like this be without a crisis or two?

Continue reading “Ale’s Well That Ends Well! Hightail to Ale 2022 Sustainability Report”

Despite a Fail, We Prevail! Hightail to Ale 2019 Sustainability Report

Morning, Friday, May 10. It was cool in Ann Arbor. While getting ready for the Hightail to Ale 5K that evening, I received a text from the event director regarding the recycling rolloff I’d ordered:

“Hey Jeff, no dumpster on site”

So in a few hours we’d be serving several thousand runners food and beer, and we had nowhere to put hundreds of pounds of recyclables. It was time to implement my carefully thought-out contingency plan. Or scramble like hell. Or panic.

Which of the above did I choose? And how did it turn out? All is revealed below!

Continue reading “Despite a Fail, We Prevail! Hightail to Ale 2019 Sustainability Report”

Hightail to Ale: Zero Waste in the Rain

Sustainability Report: Hightail to Ale 5K
Date: May 5, 2017
Event company: RF Events, Ann Arbor MI
Location: Atwater Brewery, Detroit MI
# Attendees: 2,900 runners
Zero Waste Team volunteers: 4, plus basketball team members

Hightail to Ale is one of the “Thirsty 3” series that celebrates great beer, wine, and cider in southern Michigan. It takes place on the streets near the Atwater Brewery in Detroit, bringing several thousand runners out for a Friday night beer party with a 5K thrown in.

Waste comes mainly from the post-race party, where free beer is distributed to runners, and food trucks serve up barbecue and other local fare.

Last year the post-race waste hit us hard and fast, from the food trucks, water bottles, and thousands of cans of beer given free to finishers and sold to spectators. There was no time to weigh it, and the recovered cans disappeared from the recycle dumpsters the next day. We were determined to do better this year, despite the forecast for chilly temps and constant rain. How did we make out?
Continue reading “Hightail to Ale: Zero Waste in the Rain”

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