To scores of attendees, the East Atlanta Beer Fest is simply a good time in the warming Atlanta spring. Over 2,400 beer aficionados and fun lovers paid $30 in advance (or $35 at the door) to sample over one hundred and fifty different brews. The beers were varied and unique, from microbrews created right here in Atlanta, to Belgian Trappist beers with their adventurous alcohol content. To East Atlanta charities, the EABF provides sunnier times in the form of grant money donated to worthy causes.
In these economically uncertain times, charities nationwide are facing shortfalls in fund-raising and in operating costs. While nothing short of a global economic turn around can reverse this trend, the EABF can help in East Atlanta. EABF, Inc. was designated with 501(c)(3) status in 2005 and 2008 marks the second year that EABF has distributed proceeds from the festival using a grant application process.
When the EABF sent out applications for grants, they received several well deserved and worthy requests. Although not every request could be met, the EABF is happy to announce that seven East Atlanta charities are recipients of over $25,000.
Martha Brown United Methodist Church has been an anchor in the East Atlanta community for many decades. In the tornado of 2008, Martha Brown’s sign was destroyed, and she suffered the fate of many that evening. Luckily, the building survived heavy damage. The EABF will be donating funds to help build a new sign that will be more interactive and hopes to be a beacon for the neighborhood.
The East Atlanta Business Association was chartered as a Georgia non-profit corporation in the early 1980′s and sought to synchronize the merchants and the East Atlanta community. Members of this business community founded the East Atlanta Strut and continue to make other major contributions to our great neighborhood.
EABF has provided funds to help EABA maintain a regular clean up program for the business district that will benefit everyone that visits the area. EABA plans to coordinate with SouthStar Community Development Corporation to bring their Clean Street Team to the East Atlanta Village and maintain it on a regular basis.
The FitWit Foundation, Inc. was founded in 2008 and modeled its programs after the boot camp style fitness camps that have become so popular in Atlanta. In fact, FitWit LLC was a major innovator in this fitness community and has donated instructors, equipment, and clients to help run the non-profit FitWit Foundation. EABF is happy to provide funds for Leaders for Life, which is a personal growth program, providing the opportunity for East Atlanta teens to develop important leadership skills and maintain personal fitness. Zoo Atlanta will host the Leaders for Life program and will give the participants a new environment in which they can become the people they truly are, away from the distractions of their daily surroundings.
The Friends of Brownwood Park have advocated for this beautiful, yet neglected park for years and are only steps away from several new amenities. The EABF will provide funds that will assist in adding drinking fountains and in designing new sidewalks. This treasure of green space sits in the middle of East Atlanta and is often forgotten by our residents and our City officials. Take a minute to visit Brownwood Park and see its vast potential.
The East Atlanta Kids Club has been providing a safe place to play and learn since 1998. Their activities are mainly split between Martha Brown United Methodist Church and the Brownwood Park Recreation Area. EABF is providing funds that the East Atlanta Kids Club will be able to use in their general fund. Itâ€™s a fund that has been hit hard with the economic downturn.
In 2005, the Sopo Bicycle Cooperative, Inc. opened its space in East Atlanta and its doors to anyone who might need help with bicycle repair and maintenance. Most of the shop’s users are East Atlanta residents, including children, residents of Brannan Towers, families, and students.
The EABF is providing funds to the Sopo Bicycle Cooperative so they can buy tools and material to keep their shop open and running through 2009, during which they expect to assist one thousand people.
Sylvester Cemetery is the oldest historic site in East Atlanta and has served the community since 1838. Today, there are more than 1,400 persons laid to rest here, including children, veterans of the Civil War, the Spanish-American War, WWI, WWII, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War. The roads in the cemetery were laid out about a hundred years ago and have suffered from erosion problems, some of them rather serious. There are several thousand feet of roads within the cemetery and all of them are dirt.
The EABF will be providing funds to assist the Sylvester Cemetery Foundation with repairing the roads providing better access for family and community.
In addition to assisting these non-profit agencies, the EABF has purchased equipment for the Atlanta Police Department, which has seen its own share of budgetary shortfalls. EABF donated twenty digital cameras which can be used by patrol officers to quickly and easily record evidence at the scene. EABF is in the process of purchasing two mountain bikes that can be used by police officers in focused patrols.
The 2010 East Atlanta Beer Festival is scheduled for May 22nd and promises to improve the selection and amenities for festival participants, including more porta potties, additional food choices and a VIP area. The Sixth Annual East Atlanta Beer Festival welcomes all who care about improving their community, one beer at a time.