Categorized under: event, Gritty McDuffs

Gritty McDuff’s Named Official Brew Pub and Beer of 2nd Annual Dempsey Challenge‏

Gritty McDuff's Logo
Maine brewer to expand role and fundraising activities for October 2-3, 2010 event

Portland, Maine – Maine craft brewer Gritty McDuff’s Brewing Company ( has once again been selected as the official brew pub of The Dempsey Challenge (, event organizers announced today. The high-profile run, walk and cycling event, established last year by actor and Lewiston, Maine, native Patrick Dempsey to benefit The Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope & Healing, has been expanded to a two-day format this year, to be held October 2-3 in Lewiston, Maine. The second annual event is expected to draw thousands of participants and spectators.

According to Thomas Wilson, Gritty’s marketing director, in addition to being the official brew pub of the Dempsey Challenge for the second year, Gritty’s has created several new ways to promote the event and raise additional funds for the cause through on-premise offerings, a golf tournament, and an expanded cycling presence.

“We had a fantastic time at the Dempsey Challenge last year, and we wanted to be even more involved this year,” he explained. “By establishing a pre-event golf tournament and sponsoring a Gritty’s team in this year’s race, we hope to more than double our contribution to this worthy cause in 2010.”

New this year, members of Gritty’s official cycling team will participate in the 50-mile trek on October 3, alongside world-class and novice cyclists. Team members will solicit additional per-mile donations before the race and, as a result, Wilson anticipates a significant team donation to the Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope & Healing. Those interested in joining Gritty’s cycling team can register online at

In another new show of support this year, the first Gritty’s Dempsey Challenge golf tournament will be held at the Martindale Country Club in Auburn on July 19, with net proceeds from the event going directly to the Dempsey Challenge. The tournament will feature a scramble format with plenty of prizes, lunch and giveaways. To register for Gritty’s Dempsey Challenge golf tournament, contact Wilson at by July 2.

“The support of local businesses and Maine-based companies such as Gritty McDuff’s made the inaugural Dempsey Challenge an unparalleled success,” said Wendy Tardif, Dempsey Challenge event manager. “We’re grateful that Gritty’s is not only participating again this year, but also growing its participation and finding creative ways to both involve the community and increase donations to the cause.”

As the official brew pub of the event, the brewers at Gritty’s Lewiston/Auburn pub are gearing up to brew the annual batch of “Gritty’s Dempsey Challenge Courage Ale.” The signature brew will be sold on tap at the Lewiston/Auburn pub beginning in July, and $1 from each pint served will be donated to the Challenge. This delicious golden pale ale also will be sold at The Challenge to the thousands of participating adults.

Once again, an official Dempsey Challenge jersey signed by Patrick Dempsey will be given to the lucky winner of a free drawing at Gritty’s Lewiston/Auburn pub. Gritty’s fans can register to win the highly sought-after prize by stopping by the pub to enter between August 1 and October 4. The winner will be selected on October 5.

The Dempsey Challenge has been expanded to a two-day format this year. Saturday events include the Kid’s Fun Run and the 5 and 10K run/walk, while the signature Dempsey Challenge cycling events will be held on Sunday, October 3, and will feature cycling routes of 10, 25, 50 and 100 miles.

A free, weekend-long Festival in the Park will also highlight the event. In addition to an array of vendors and family-friendly activities, such as a KidZone, live music, entertainment and an art workshop, the Festival will focus on wellness with a health expo, information about cancer prevention and early detection, and health screenings. The activities throughout the weekend will be held at Simard-Payne Police Memorial Park in Lewiston.

Founded in March 2008, The Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope & Healing at Central Maine Medical Center provides high-quality education, support and wellness services at no cost to cancer patients and their caregivers. In 2009, the Dempsey Center had over 7,000 direct patient contacts and served over 2,000 on its toll-free cancer helpline.

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About Gritty McDuff’s Brewing Company

Since its founding in 1988, Gritty McDuff’s, Maine’s first brew pub since Prohibition, has brewed creative, quality beers that have earned awards ranging from repeat First Place wins at the annual Real Ale Festival in Chicago, to a silver medal at the prestigious Great British Beer Festival for Gritty’s cask-conditioned version of the brewer’s 21 IPA. Gritty’s has earned numerous accolades from a wide variety of beer blogs and industry press outlets, as well, including Every Day with Rachael Ray,, DRAFT magazine, Cosmopolitan, Imbibe and Santé.

In addition to brewing, Gritty McDuff’s operates three popular brew pubs in Maine. Located in Portland, Freeport, and Lewiston/Auburn, the pubs draw crowds of all ages and have frequently won in statewide polls the titles of “Maine’s Best Brew Pub,” “Best Maine Microbrew,” and “Best Bar.” Known for their four seasonal ales and five year-round ales, tempting pub fare and welcoming atmosphere, Gritty’s pubs have been named an Editor’s Pick by Condé Nast Traveler, highlighted as “a legend among New England brewpubs” by The Boston Globe, and cited by as one of the best bars in America.

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