Drinkers of Mombucha, the kombucha-style tea brewed in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, will have more to feel good about than their healthy beverage choices this month and next. Through May 31, all Mombucha “storefront” sales on Zaarly.com will go directly to fundraising efforts for the AIDS Lifecycle Ride to End AIDS. Mombucha creator and master brewer Rich Awn will join friend and Lifecycle team leader Tim Lee for the 545-mile ride, which will go from San Francisco to Los Angeles this summer.
Awn said the fundraising effort was influenced by a Facebook post by Lee and, indirectly, an uncle’s active role in the LGBTQ community. “My whole family is ultra liberal,” he said. “I want to give back to the gay and lesbian community, be active in that community.”
For Awn, starting his Mombucha business wasn’t quite such an arduous feat. In 2005 at age 20, he began brewing a recipe appropriated from his mother.
“I’ve always been a tinkerer, a doer,” Awn said. “Then I started using different infusions and teas.” To prepare for the race, in addition to a training regimen of 20 or more miles of bike riding a day, Awn created a special passion-fruit-infused Mombucha tea titled “Team Wino,” the name of his and Lee’s riding team. “You can drink it while you’re riding and it’s an awesome boost,” he said. Awn hopes to arrive at the race with a contribution of $10,000—an amount that depends on Mombucha sales, and a contribution from Zaarly, which will match up to $5,000.
“Before, I was donating half of the proceeds because I couldn’t figure out how to sustain business,” said Awn, who started offering the deal at a Zaarly Bazaar event in Brooklyn earlier this month. “Now I can be one of their top fundraisers. It’s been satisfying creatively and physically.” To try Mombucha while supporting the fight against AIDS, visit the brand’s Zaarly storefront. Or, meet Rich Awn and other Zaarly storefront owners at the local Zaarly Bazaar on Sunday, April 28 at The Space, 50 N.3rd St. in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, from 3 p.m. – 6 p.m.
So Brooklyn just had its now annual tradition of zine makers and lovers all getting together and talking about, celebrating and of course, buying zines. Missed it? Ah well, there’s always next year. Or maybe you’re the type that wants some zines but doesn’t want to leave the house? Good thing for you then that we partnered up with Markus Almond to give away three copies of his fabulous, handmade production, Brooklyn to Mars, eh?
As a reminder: Brooklyn to Mars is a self-published magazine as old school as it gets. Publisher Markus Almond types every word on the paper himself, copies and assembles it himself and goes around drops it off at Spoonbill and Sugartown himself. And the labor or love comes with a lot of damn labor: typing, cutting, pasting and copying all the pages in each issue takes over 20 hours. Which would explain why it only comes out twice a year and is limited to 100 issues for each run. And here he is, being nice enough to give some away. What a guy.
Sounds awesome huh? If you’re as excited about Brooklyn to Mars as we are, you can enter our giveaway and be one of the seven lucky people to win the three copies of it that Markus has published so far. Maybe it’ll even be the thing that launches you into a new era of positive thinking. Crazier things have happened. We assume.a Rafflecopter giveaway
Everyone wants a freakin Kindle nowadays. They’re so quick to move into the future and throw away the tactile pleasures of reading something that you hold in your hands and turn the pages yourself. I’ve beat this drum before and the odds are I’ll keep beating it. Because I like to repeat myself for one, but also because it’s an important subject to bring up. At the moment though, people who actually like the tactile sensation of paper going through their fingers can rest assured that Brooklyn is a place where reading on paper hasn’t been forgotten. My proof? Our love affair with zines, seen most clearly in the fact that the Brooklyn Zine Festival is having its second consecutive celebration of the medium this month. If you want to get yourself pumped for the festival of paper cuts, we’ve got three issues of Brooklyn to Mars, a hand-assembled, type-written zine made right here in Brooklyn to give away to you.
What the hell is Brooklyn to Mars? It’s a self-published magazine as old school as it gets. Publisher Markus Almond types every word on the paper himself, copies and assembles it himself and goes around drops it off at Spoonbill and Sugartown himself. Almond said the zine was originally a way to focus himself on his other business, running a music licensing company, but that he came to enjoy writing it so much that it’s become it’s own labor of love. And it is a labor: typing, cutting, pasting and copying all the pages in each issue takes over 20 hours. Which would explain why it only comes out twice a year and is limited to 100 issues for each run. Of course, despite the fact that Almond throws so much time into physically putting the zine together, if you’re curious about it, you can see the content at the zine’s website, and if you want one, you can even order it online if he has any copies left.
Writing helps keeps Almond’s mind clear and in a positive space now, and it’s reflected in Brooklyn to Mars‘ content, which has skewed mostly to the non-fiction side in its three issues. A lot of the prose is brief, two or three paragraphs that serve as reminders to take a step back and see the positives in life, with even briefer snippets of often funny fiction mixed in with the inspiration.
Sounds awesome huh? If you’re as excited about Brooklyn to Mars as we are, you can enter our giveaway and win the three copies of it that Markus has published so far. Maybe it’ll even be the thing that launches you into a new era of positive thinking. Crazier things have happened. We assume.a Rafflecopter giveaway
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