by Cortnee Jensen
In the past few months, I have been busy planning the second annual Fargo community fundraiser. Usually, you would expect the keyword in that sentence to be fundraiser. But, in my experience, the keyword has been community. Our friends at Proof Artisan Distillers, after partnering with us for last year's event, graciously offered to host the event this year...and to donate their incredible alcohol...and to donate food by their talented chef, Judd!
We have been overwhelmed by their generosity and commitment to seeing our event succeed. And, if that isn't enough, Judd and Andrea (the Events Manager) have helped secure other chefs willing to donate their time and talent to the experience. We are thrilled to have cuisine specifically designed for our event from Toasted Frog, Barbacoa, Luna and Proof!
Happy Harry's Bottle Shops signed on as our first sponsor last year when this event was just a crazy idea. I explained our program and my event concept to Dustin (the CEO) in the parking lot of Happy Harry’s and, despite being in the overwhelming process of opening their new 53rd Ave S location, he signed on! Dustin and Happy Harry’s are the reason that “In Great Spirits” came to be.
This year, there was no hesitation in partnering again and providing the gin, whiskey and wine for the evening. In addition, Jay (the General Manager) and Dustin have offered help in advertising the event to their extensive network and calling in favors from their contacts in local media. In every conversation, they have guided me on to how to make our event better. Every meeting feels a little like my birthday, because they offer to provide things like tasting cups, wine glasses and extra bottles of alcohol for our blind bottle auction. Jay is even planning to come and personally pour the wines on October 18th! And he KNOWS wine!
Although planning any event is work, especially one with this caliber of cuisine and “top shelf” alcohol, this process has been a joy. The Fargo community has risen to support our event and our mission. We don’t just have event sponsors; we have event partners. Thank you to our friends at Proof and Happy Harry’s for partnering with us “In Great Spirits!”