A Year of Fabulous Firsts — 2014 First Friday Review
Written by Brandi Jackson
What a fabulous year it has been! Our First Friday celebrations have grown from a handful of friends and clients to a store packed to the brim! With our neighboring businesses participating and sponsoring (Soho Cycling Studio, Buddy Brew Coffee, Malindy Elene and PowerStories)the Tampa Police Department was needed help with pedestrian traffic crossing Kennedy Blvd. at Albany Ave. A BIG thank you for joining in on the fun. It was so amazing to see the street a buzz with people going from store to store learning more about our “Albany Square” neighborhood.
Each month we focused on a different and typically, local charity. We raised money for the American Heart Association, Make-A-Wish Foundation, The Tampa Garden Club, Hope Childrens Home, Historic Hyde Park Neighborhood Association, The Junior League of Tampa, American Cancer Society, Feeding America Tampa Bay, Give Day Tampa Bay, Moffitt Cancer Center, Michelle DeJong, and Academy Prep Center of Tampa. Whether through sales, donations, toys, or canned goods, you came together to help those in need within our community. We hope that you learned about some new charities and have possibly adopted a new favorite cause. A huge thank you to all of the staff from these charities that worked so hard on promoting Clayton Gray Home and the First Friday Celebrations, together we made great fundraising partners.
What would our First Friday celebrations be without food, cocktails and photography?! HUGE thanks go out to all of our sponsors for First Friday. These businesses donated the goods that helped our First Friday celebrations grow to the next level. Thank you to MichaelJon Photography for photographing so many of our FF celebrations and thank you to 4d Studios LLC, event photography. Always making us look our best and preserving the memories of the night, without our paparazzi, the last year would be a distant memory. Kudos and cheers to Fruit of the Vine Organics and Clementine Chef for sponsoring not just one, but TWO FF celebrations. Absolutely delicious and amazing, local, organic food delivered fresh every week! Working closely with our local neighbors, Ducky’s, Boca Kitchen, Squeeze Juice Works and Buddy Brew Coffee, all served up some delicious nibbles and drinks. Family Table Catering also wowed us with their delicious wraps and desserts.
Swag bags and raffle items are always a favorite amongst the guests and we would be remiss if we didn’t thank all of those who helped add the swag to the bags and the sparkle to the raffle items. Buddy Brew Coffee, Soho Cycling Studio, Shear Art South Tampa, Bodyshapers Fitness, and the Tampa Garden Club, thank you for your generous support of Clayton Gray Home and our First Friday fundraisers.
Now to those who have kept the entertainment vibe going during our First Fridays, Boneyard and Nick Peterson. We want to pay a special thank you to the man with the swag, Nick Peterson. Thank you Nick for playing bartender for us on so many of our First Friday celebrations, you’ve definitely made it fun and entertaining! Keeping the jams pumping and the crowds jumping, Boneyard has been featured at three of our First Friday celebrations, twice as a whole band and a solo performance from Bob Frierson. Great local music and a great local celebrity, we are certainly blessed!
If you missed coming out to First Friday in 2014, we certainly hope to see you in 2015! This week, for January, we will change it up a bit by hosting a daytime event. On January 2nd, we will have a Customer Appreciation First Friday from 10–5.Throughout the day, we will have several different offerings of food and beverages such as Buddy Brew Coffee served with healthy breakfast noms, Fruit of the Vine Organics will provide a fabulous lunchtime salad and we will feature a juice bar from Squeeze Juice Works featuring their “Get Fresh” juice for an afternoon snack and to help jumpstart the detox needed from the holiday indulgences. Bradford Stevens from Viking Fitness will be on hand from 12–5 to provide fitness tips for that New Years Resolution and to talk about our spotlight charity, South Florida Rowing Association. Introducing something new for 2015, you can sign up to join our birthday club for special birthday perks! Stop by Clayton Gray Home on January 2nd from 10–5 and join in the fun. Until then, have a safe and fun new years and cheers to 2015!
Leave a Reply