The crew at Thunder Island Brewing Co., in Cascade Locks, prepared meals for Gorge firefighters. Thunder Island has also set up a fundraising campaign to benefit Gorge-based fire departments. (Submitted photo)
As of Wednesday, September 13, 2017
On Friday, Sept. 8, Thunder Island Brewing Co launched a GoFundMe fundraising campaign to benefit Columbia River Gorge-based fire departments in response to the Eagle Creek wildfire.
All of the funds raised through GoFundMe, a trusted online fundraising platform, will be distributed equally amongst local fire departments. Beneficiaries of the fundraising campaign are Cascade Locks Fire & EMS, North Bonneville Fire Department, Skamania County Fire District #2 (serving the community of Stevenson), Skamania County Fire District #1 (serving the community of Carson), Skamania County Fire District #4 (serving the community of Washougal) and Skamania County Fire District #5 (serving the community of Skamania).
The Eagle Creek wildfire has impacted communities throughout the Gorge. Hundreds of families have received mandatory (level 3) evacuation notices. Many more were notified that they may have to leave at a moment’s notice.
According to Thunder Island Brewing Co co-owner Caroline Park, “local firefighter groups have been on the front lines from the beginning. These groups were the first to respond to provide structural and wildland fire support to our vulnerable communities.”
Hundreds of people have contacted the brewery offering their help and support after learning about the many local Cascade Locks businesses feeding the fire crews. David Lipps, co-owner of Thunder Island Brewing Co, said in response: “In the first few days of the fire, we got to meet and serve many of these amazing men and women that are volunteering their time to protect our communities and our beloved Columbia Gorge. At the same time, hundreds of our customers and community members wanted to donate or help. We thought a fundraiser for our local fire departments would be a meaningful way to honor their work.”
“Our local Gorge fire departments are volunteer-based, meaning they operate on a fraction of the resources that others do. They need our support now, more than ever, to continue to have the training and equipment they need to keep our communities safe year-round,”said Park. With the ongoing Eagle Creek wildfire, and with the worst and most treacherous winter in decades, the first responders of the Columbia River Gorge have depleted many of their resources in the name of public safety.
Thunder Island Brewing Co will donate 100% of the proceeds from the GoFundMe fundraiser to Cascade Locks Fire & EMS, North Bonneville Fire Department, Skamania County Fire District #1, #2, #4 and #5.
For information, thunderislandbrewing.com