FAT Village is all grown up. Fort Lauderdale’s little arts neighborhood that could has gone from a humble strip of converted warehouses off NW Fifth Street a few years ago to a thriving urban enclave where galleries, co-ops, and boutique creative businesses comingle – especially on the last Saturday of the month.
The art walk at FAT Village continues to draw a variety of young working professionals, but no hip, up-and-coming neighborhood is truly complete until
That's where Cocktails for Humanity comes in. The pop-up bar operates out of the coworking space General Provision that waters FAT Village’s art-walking masses with a rotating selection of handcrafted libations.
Entering its fourth month this Saturday, Cocktails for Humanity (whose name basically encapsulates the millennial ethos) will return to General Provision for its latest round of beverages served with an extra shot of good will.
The pop-up bar began three months ago, when Tim Hasse and Charles Lawrence, co-owners of General Provision, realized that the bar area they were already using to peddle coffee and other beverages for charity since opening last year could yield even more success with a few extra helping hands. Already at the helm of their own incubator for bright young professionals invested in their local community, it didn’t take long to find volunteers who were eager to take the idea and run with it.
Former New Times editor and local journalist Eric Barton and his wife, Jill, a legal-writing professor, curate the menu each month, while a spattering of other volunteers pick up the rest of the slack. According to Barton, it’s mostly lawyers, accountants, and bankers donating their free time after realizing “how crazy fun it is to mix cocktails for a crowd."
"General Provision's Jacqui
So how exactly does it work? For starters, all proceeds from the pop-up events, including the tips, go straight to the charities. The nonprofit pays the state a $25 fee for a temporary liquor permit, and then all donations after expenses go directly to them. Customers can even deduct their drinks as a donation to charity. The bar accepts cash and credit, and the nonprofits sign in using Square credit card readers, so the money goes directly to them.
So far, Cocktails for Humanity has benefited the Jack & Jill Children’s Center and Handy Inc., two local, youth-focused organizations, and this Saturday’s proceeds will go toward downtown Fort Lauderdale’s new urban art trail, Mockingbird Trail.
On average, the pop-ups have been bringing in about $1,500 a night, “but honestly, we can do better,” Barton says. “We've run out of alcohol every month. Last month, even after running out at 10:30, we brought in about $2,600. After expenses, $1,988 went to Handy."
Their goal is to hit three grand monthly after expenses. Next month’s pop-up will benefit Craig Snyder's Skateboarding Heritage Foundation, then Emerge Broward's Turkey Trot in October. And while the plan is to continue operating out of General Provision at the art walks, Barton envisions the concept working on an even larger scale.
“We keep thinking maybe we could do other locations at festivals and events. With just one location, we're looking at raising $30,000 a year. Can you imagine how much we could raise if we expanded? It would be really cool to see this grow into something where we're raising boatloads of money simply by selling drinks all over town."
Drink prices range from $6 to $9 for craft beers and cocktails, and organizations and volunteers interested in getting involved can email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Peep this Saturday’s full menu below:
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- Oak-aged Manhattan ($9) Bulleit bourbon, Martini & Rossi vermouth, bitters, cinnamon agave, aged three weeks
- Moscow Mule ($7) Tito’s vodka, ginger beer, lime
- Dark & Stormy ($7) Aged rum, ginger beer, lime
- Planter’s Punch ($7) Myer's dark rum, orange, pineapple, lemon, grenadine
- Cigar City Maduro Brown
- Miami Brewing Co. Big Rod Coconut Ale
- Miami Brewing Co. Gator Tail Brown Ale
- Up Dog
- Orange Blossom Toasted Coconut Porter
- Orange Blossom Weisse wheat beer