My friends back home think my job consists of floating down rivers and drinking beer. After years of watching their eyes glaze over as I told them about the important water sampling and policy work we do to protect our river, I figured “if you can’t beat ’em, then live up to their expectations.”

The Riverkeeper Beer Series is fulfilling my goal to paddle and drink beer quite nicely. We are getting ready to release the fourth beer in the series with Hi-Wire Brewing on Saturday, at the Big Top in Asheville’s Biltmore Village.

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We will spend the morning dragging tires, shopping carts, 40 ounce bottles, and, if we’re lucky, a blow up doll (it’s happened before), from the Swannanoa River. Then we’ll head over to Hi-Wire’s Big Top in Biltmore to sample, and by sample I mean drink a bunch of new Hi-Wire session IPA’s with experimental hops.

Watershed Dry Bags and Southern Raft Supply will reward the brave folks who hauled out the strangest piece of trash, and raffle tickets will be on sale for some fancy dry bags and gear.

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In addition to drinking beer and pulling trash out of the river, the beer series is paddling the entire French Broad River Paddle Trail, one Saturday at a time. The paddlers started at the headwaters in Rosman, North Carolina and have snaked their way under a canopy of trees, past farmland and recently to the rapids and rocks that dot the river north of Asheville. These section paddles have now paddled over 90 miles of the almost 150 miles included in the paddle trail.

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Next up is a Wicked Weed IPA, aptly named Riverkeeeper IPA. Not only will folks get the chance to try the latest in an award winning series of beers from Wicked Weed, but Liquid Logic Kayaks is donating an SUP board for raffle. Visit the bottle shop at the brewery for a chance to win, or come to the beer release party at Wicked Weed on September 3.

To sign up for the cleanup and for more information visit mountaintrue.org.