ABOUT WHALES FOR WISHES
"In 2015 I was nominated as an Honoree of the W.I.S.H. Society for Make-a-Wish® Central and Western North Carolina."
As an Honoree, I was tasked with raising $6,000 – the average cost of one child's Wish. I am extremely passionate about Make-a-Wish® due, in part, to the fact that in 2007 my son was granted a Wish through the foundation. I know what a difference that trip made to our family, and I want to give back so others can have the same experience.
One fundraising idea that I came up with was to raffle off 6 bottles of Pliny the Elder from Russian River Brewing Company (we had a friend send us some fresh Pliny!). After talking with a few people about this idea, I was put in touch with Mark Iafrate from the Beer Exchange….
W.I.S.H. Society Honoree & Wish Parent
THE START OF SOMETHING SPECIAL
On June 18, 2015 at 1:37 PM I received an email from Justin Moore titled “Introduction to Betsy Pence.”
Justin told me Betsy had been selected as part of the 2015 W.I.S.H Society and was working to raise $6,000 to grant a child’s wish. Being huge craft beer fans, Betsy and her husband Jim decided they were going to raffle off some bottles of the infamous Pliny The Elder from Russian River Brewing Company to help raise some of the money towards their goal. Justin had known me for some time through the local craft beer scene, and also knew I had started The Beer Exchange earlier in 2014. Soon as he heard of Betsy’s idea, Justin thought there may be a way we could all work together and put on a fun event to help raise some money for charity.
He couldn't have been more right. Betsy and I met over beers and set the wheels in motion for the first annual Whales for Wishes bottle share….
Co-Founder Whales for Wishes
NOW WE'RE THINKING BIGGER
As of 2021, we've raised over $260,000 for Make-A-Wish.
Little did we all know that single introduction would give birth to an annual event that has raised hundreds of thousand of dollars for Make-A-Wish, and helped grant dozens of wishes to local children. That first Whale for Wishes took place at Olde Mecklenburg Brewery on Sunday, July 26, and raised just over $500. At the 7th Annual Whales for Wishes in 2021, we raised just over $45,000. We hope to see you at the 2022 event!
Event Planning & Fundraising
Planning, Fundraising, Marketing
Design, Planning, Marketing
Make-A-Wish Liaison, Event Planning
JESSICA LAMKIN MOORE
Learn more about the Pence's story and why Whales for Wishes exists today.
The inaugural Whales for Wishes was held on July 26, 2015 at Olde Mecklenburg Brewery.
Olde Mecklenburg Brewery hosted us again in 2016 for the second annual W4W bottle share.
The third annual Whales for Wishes was also held at OMB, and we raised just over $15,000 for Make-A-Wish.
The 4th annual Whales for Wishes was hosted by Resident Culture Brewing Company. We set out to raise $18,000 and instead raised just over $25,000 for Make-A-Wish!
The 5th annual Whales for Wishes was hosted at Resident Culture Brewing Company, and we raised just over $50,000 for Make-A-Wish!
Despite having to cancel the in-person bottle share due to COVID-19, we still beat our goal and raised just over $117,000 for Make-A-Wish!
For the second year we needed to keep Whales for Wishes as a virtual-only event. Despite not being able to meet in person, we were still able to raise just over $45,000 for Make-A-Wish!
The 8th annual Whales for Wishes will return to an in-person format in 2022! More information on the in-person event and rare beer raffle is coming soon, so stay tuned!
Whether you want to become a sponsor or help us with planning or running the event, we would love to chat!
Whales for Wishes is an annual bottle share and rare beer raffle that raises money for Make-A-Wish Central and Western NC. All logos, content, and images copyright Whales for Wishes.