Fair State Cooperates: Open Arms of Minnesota

Long before Fair State Brewing Cooperative formed, our three founders were brewing beer. Yes, sometimes they brewed at other breweries. But most often, they brewed at home. Like many breweries around us, we come from humble homebrew beginnings.

Rewind to 1986. Bill Rowe starts cooking meals in his apartment and delivering them to a few men he knew who were too sick from AIDS to cook for themselves. Thirty years later, 6,000-some volunteers from across the state of Minnesota come and cook meals in a 21,000 square foot facility and deliver them to the people who need them most. Open Arms of Minnesota may have its roots in humble beginnings, but these days, the impact goes far beyond one man in his home kitchen.



Each week, Open Arms serves around 1,000 people with chronic illnesses (cancer, HIV/AIDS, multiple sclerosis, and ALS) by delivering meals to them throughout the week. Each client receives a week’s worth of meals at a time (breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks), delivered by a volunteer. Operating on a “Food is Medicine” mentality, the chefs and dietitians at Open Arms work together to create tasty and nutritious meals.

In recent years, Open Arms started their own organic farming project, following sustainable permaculture practices. By involving themselves directly in urban farming projects,  they can use what they harvest in their own kitchen. Currently, Open Arms runs two farms in Minneapolis and two in Saint Paul.

To show our support for Open Arms of Minnesota, Fair State will be donating both time and a portion of our CROWLER sales throughout the month of March.

To volunteer, you can join us at our cooking event on March 6 or our bag decorating event on March 17. You can volunteer more frequently by volunteering to deliver meals, farm during planting season, work in the kitchen, or work in the Open Arms offices.

To stay up to date on all of our Cooperates Volunteer Opportunities here at Fair State, visit the Cooperates Page.


Photos courtesy of Open Arms of Minnesota.