By Alex Gladu, Writer, Independent We Stand
How do you celebrate spring, showcase local businesses, promote a local historic site and raise money for local charities in one weekend? In Gordon, Alabama, it only takes one event. Last month, on March 21, more than 400 local residents and nearly 50 small businesses joined together at Chattahoochee State Park’s Spring Fling to support a good cause and their great community.
By all accounts, the Spring Fling was a success for the local community. Kim and Alan Taylor, managers of Chattahoochee State Park and owners of a local small business, organized the event to promote the park, raise money for nonprofit organizations and help the community kick off the spring and summer festival season. Bob Pforte Motors, a locally owned FCA US LLC – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles BusinessLink dealer and an Independent We Stand premium member, offered support as the event’s presenting sponsor.
“What better way to promote a small business than alongside other small businesses,” says Dowling Lee, BusinessLink manager at Bob Pforte Motors, in Marianna, FL., As the presenting sponsor, Bob Pforte Motors donated over two thousand dollars to the event’s beneficiaries and gave away two Yeti coolers, one to an individual and one to a small business.
Ultimately, the Spring Fling supported more than small businesses. Proceeds from the event, raised through booth rentals, entry fees and donations, went to five local animal rescue organizations. One of these is the Big Bend Wildlife Sanctuary, an all-volunteer organization that took in more than 800 new animals in 2014.
All of the festivity took place in Chattahoochee State Park, another symbol of the community’s togetherness. The state park was originally established in the Great Depression era by the Works Project Administration (WPA). More recently, the state of Alabama looked to close the park, but Houston County took over the operation instead. Members of the community stepped in to restore the park’s cleanliness and usability. Now, Chattahoochee State Park remains open seven days a week and its winding dirt roads and hiking trails remind visitors of the area’s history and natural beauty.
Events like southeastern Alabama’s Spring Fling bring communities together for worthy causes and showcase all that small businesses have to offer. If you’re participating in an event in your community, let us know by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
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