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Second Annual COMMUNITY APPLE DRIVE a First of Its Kind

Published: August 29, 2016

Eugene, Ore. – Lane County's summer heat is ripening area fruit trees earlier than normal and for WildCraft Cider Works this means their second annual COMMUNITY APPLE DRIVE is shaping up to be a record year. An early harvest, combined with greater community knowledge of this unique partnership, has meant that juice is filling holding tanks a nearly five times the 2015 rate.  
Wildcraft Donation 230 PxOver 700 donations of apples, plums and pears are filling the Lincoln Street press house with an out-of-this-world aroma.  On this sunny Wednesday afternoon a set of grandparents with their grandson stopped in with boxes and buckets of pears filling their Subaru. The scales tipped at nearly 300 pounds and the group left with cider certificates and a growler full of fresh squeezed apple juice.  

Owner Sean Kelly was excited to provide us a tour of the press house, located one block north of the Cider Works restaurant and tasting room on Lincoln Street, and to share his vision for converting the old Eugene Planing Mill site into a consolidated WildCraft operation. An enlarged restaurant and tasting room, cider presses, storage and offices will be combined with an outdoor deck area for customers to enjoy locally sourced ciders and food. But that's a story for another day because every day is being consumed with the COMMUNITY APPLE DRIVE.

Sean's prides himself and his organization on, "being community organizers and responsible stewards of local resources."  He goes onto to say, "The annual COMMUNITY APPLE DRIVE allows us to combine our passion for cider with our commitment to community involvement. This full-scale community effort helps us utilize local resources; the age-old process of crafting handmade cider brings us closer together."  

Wildcraft Press Sorting 230pxThis annual event provides an opportunity for the whole community to participate. Maybe you have a neglected fruit tree in your yard or your neighbor's trees are dropping fruit on your lawn. Pick it up and become part of the 2016 COMMUNITY APPLE DRIVE. Fruit is being accepted through November.  

The fruits of your (our) labor will be a community cider that will be ready for consumption sometime between January and March 2017. Last year's cider was amazing, so even if you don't take part in the COMMUNITY APPLE DRIVE be sure to make your way to WildCraft and do a tasting. Your purchase will result in a larger community donation. 10 percent of the proceeds are donated to area charitable organizations and this year the beneficiaries include; McKenzie River Trust, Long Tom Watershed Council and Friends of Buford Park & Mt. Pisgah.

In 2015, 500 gallons of cider was produced and in 2016 the total is already over 1,600 gallons. With more harvesting ahead the volume of cider produced is looking to be many times the 2015 total.  This means the community will enjoy the COMMUNITY CIDER year-round and the beneficiaries will see a significant increase in benefit.   

Fast Facts

Drop fruit at these locations:
WildCraft press house: 254 Lincoln St. Eugene, OR 97401  •  Mon – Fri: 9am-5pm
the Cider House: 390 Lincoln St. Eugene, OR 97401  •  Tues – Sat: after 5pm

The more fruit you bring the more trade you get!
1 bushel = 1 pint of cider or 1 quart of fresh juice. 
4 bushels* = 32oz commemorative growlette**+ fill• OR •One ticket to 2016 Harvest Party

More Photos

Contact: WildCraft Cider Works 541-735-3506 ext.3