Feb 24, 2014
12:50 PM
Health & Wellness

Drinking Beer Across Connecticut for Pediatric Cancer Research at Smilow

Drinking Beer Across Connecticut for Pediatric Cancer Research at Smilow

The CT Pour Tour vehicle.

When Massachusetts native Todd Ruggere finished a beer tour of his home state last year, he wanted to do it again—this time in Connecticut. He is going to drink a beer in every town in the state this year as part of a Todd's CT Pour Tour and raise funds to benefit pediatric cancer research in the process.

The original idea hit the 39-year-old—a processor at The Bank of New York when not quaffing beers—when he realized he had been to less than half the towns in Massachusetts. He decided he would visit every town and have a beer, while helping sick kids. By tour’s end, he raised nearly $43,000 for a Massachusetts cancer institute.

This year all money raised is going to Smilow Cancer Hospital at Yale-New Haven.

“I like beer. I like to talk to people and socialize,” says Ruggere. He kicked off his Connecticut tour at Stratford’s Two Roads Brewing Co., his main sponsor. Since January, he’s been driving to Connecticut every weekend in his shiny SUV plastered with sponsors’ logos as well as a big cartoon version of himself holding a beer and proclaiming,“Todd’s CT Pour Tour.”

Ruggere says he’s had three or four bars reach out to him in some towns, each wanting to host his visit. He lets his online followers decide which bar he should go to, and considers advice from locals as well. Everywhere he goes, he is greeted by enthusiastic followers, some who even bring their cancer-stricken children to share their stories. 

In Wolcott, a man with cancer told him the impact the tour had on him. Mayor Thomas Dunn also presented Ruggere with a certificate of appreciation at the event. “To see someone from Massachusetts coming to Connecticut and stop at every town, helping kids, is great,” says Dunn. “It’s something different. It’s cool.”

Ruggere says he’s recognized now when he goes into bars. “It’s still so strange that people say they want to meet me. I didn’t anticipate it at all,” he says. “I love it because I want to meet as many people as I can.”

Ruggere wants to raise more money with his Connecticut tour than he did in Massachusetts, even though the state is half the size. The tour is scheduled to end in September.

See a list of where Ruggere will be going.

Follow his progress on Twitter

And read more about Ruggere's efforts on his CT Pour Tour website.

 

Drinking Beer Across Connecticut for Pediatric Cancer Research at Smilow

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