Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Contest for Outdoor Cash

We're all a little strapped for cash these days. But if you're part of an outdoor organization looking for a little extra help, or any help for that matter, listen up. You and your organization could be the recipient of a $50,000 grant and national ad campaign courtesy of Redwood Creek wines. But you only have until March 1 to add your org to the list of worthy warriors.

Known for its wines and involvement in the outdoor community, Redwood Creek established the Greater Outdoors Project, which recognizes and supports nonprofits that share the company's commitment to preserve, protect and provide access to America's great outdoors. Now the company is partnering with Planet Green, a 24-hour eco-lifestyle network and the first of its kind, to help improve America's outdoors. All an organization has to do is apply online at for a chance of receiving a $50,000 grant that can then be used to fund an outdoor project for that group. And the winning organization also will be featured in a Redwood Creek ad campaign that will appear in outdoor magazines in 2009 to help the organization drum up awareness about its mission and project.

And any project that shows dedication to outdoors improvement is eligible. Think projects like cleaning up the Great Lakes or collecting litter off the Appalachian Trail. For example, the first $50,000 grant was awarded to the Southeast Wisconsin Chapter of Trout Unlimited to fund the Camp Creek Restoration Project. Camp Creek, near Madison, Wis., needed some water quality improvements and increased fishing opportunities.

To apply for this year's Greater Outdoors Project grant, outdoor nonprofits have to submit an application online, which includes submitting a statement of purpose, budget, proposed timeline, a photographs of the project. And each proposed project needs to be complete by Dec. 2010. Then a judging panel comprised of those active in the outdoor community, including Redwood Creek winemaker Cal Dennision, will sit down to review the applications before voting opens to the public. Beginning April 1 through May 31, any outdoor enthusiast can vote for their favorite applicant online or via text message. The number of votes helps determine the eventual winner.

I'm curious as to how creative some of these organizations can get. And apparently so is Cal Dennison at Redwood Creek who says the company has benefited from snowmelt irrigation in the Sierra Nevadas. "We are proud to reward those who are taking a stand to preserve the environment and are watching over America's precious lands."

Photo grabbed from ecokate. Posted by Kate

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