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Mitten Brewing Co. brewer to shave beard to raise funds for local domestic violence nonprofit

This dispatch was added by one of our Nonprofit Neighbors. It does not represent the editorial voice of The Rapidian or Community Media Center.

Mitten Brewing Co. and brewer Rob "Wob" Wanhatalo are taking a stand against domestic violence. The local brewery and pizzeria is donating a portion of sales--and some extra incentives--to help serve woman and children in their community.

Dine for a Cause

Dine in (or carry-out) on February 1st at the Mitten Brewery Co., and 50 percent of your food sales will go towards supporting Safe Haven's mission to end domestic abuse. Can't make it out on February 1? The Mitten Brewery Co. is donating a portion of food sales throughout the month of January. 

Want to see Wob shave his beard? Stop by the Mitten Brewery Co. to help raise funds for Safe Haven Ministries

Want to see Wob shave his beard? Stop by the Mitten Brewery Co. to help raise funds for Safe Haven Ministries

GRAND RAPIDS, MI—Preventing domestic violence is a long-term endeavor that requires broad community support and dedication.

Rob “Wob” Wanhatalo has embarked on his own long-term endeavor in the form of a 6-year-old beard, but now the Mitten Brewing Company brewer is ready to free his face follicles to raise money for Safe Haven Ministries, a Grand Rapids-based nonprofit.

Wanhatalo advocated for Mitten Brewing Co. to select Safe Haven as the microbrewery’s January charity.

The brewery/pizzeria is donating a portion of all the month’s sales and 50 percent of food sales on Monday, Feb. 1 to the domestic violence organization, which has been serving the West Michigan community for 25 years.

Additionally, Mitten Brewing Co. is selling dollar tokens stamped with Wanhatalo’s beard-bearing image, and if it raises more than $2,500, Wob will shave his beard. He did negotiate to keep the mustache, however.

“Unlike the mental and physical scars left by domestic violence, my beard is something that will grow back with time,” Wanhatalo said. “My hope is, with the money raised from my simple efforts, perhaps some of those mental and physical scars will heal as well.

“Often overlooked, domestic violence deserves more attention and far better funding, which is why this cause and organization mean a great deal to me.

“Every community needs the efforts of organizations like Safe Haven. Victims of abuse need someone to talk to, someone to listen, some place to go when there is nowhere else, and a helping hand to aid them in recovery, and for that I believe in the outreach and support provided by Safe Haven.”

Since opening in 2012, the Mitten Brewing Co. has raised more than $100,000 for local organizations in need. In addition, it recently started an employee volunteer program that enables staff members to provide hands-on help to its nonprofit partners. In 2015, the microbrewery’s commitment to fundraising earned it the President’s Award from the West Michigan chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.


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