February 3, 2006 7:00-11:00 pm
826CHI 1331 N Milwaukee, Chicago
It's a rare mafia that has a profit sharing plan. The Chicago Craft Mafia has decided to corner the market by teaming up with 826CHI for a fundraising event to support 826CHI's renovation and Boring Store creation. The six Mafia members and seven "friends of the family" will be selling handcrafted items suitable for romantic gift-giving on Friday, February 3 from 7-11 p.m. at 826CHI's home (1331 N. Milwaukee Ave).

The Chicago Craft Mafia has been "in business" for a year, and what better way to celebrate their anniversary than by holding their 2nd annual St. Valentine's Day Crafts(Mass)acre. But instead of taking people out, they're hoping to make it easier for 826CHI to help people out, specifically children.

"We're a fortunate group of people who wanted to help out our community," said Richelle Albrecht, owner of Girl Metro. "What better way to do that than to help an organization which promotes literacy, writing skills, and creative thinking?"

826CHI (http://www.826chi.org) is a branch of the original 826 Valencia (http://www.826valencia.org), which Dave Eggers started in California in 2002. Besides tutoring, drop-in education assistance and field trips, 826CHI will have a spy store in their space on Milwaukee Avenue in Wicker Park which will help fund their programs. But they need money to build it.

"We're glad to be on the good side of this mafia," said Leah Guenther, executive director for 826CHI. "Their light-hearted approach to business development is similar to our mission to make reading and writing untraditionally fun."

The Mafia members and friends will be donating 20 percent of all profits they raise that evening to 826CHI. There will also be several handcrafted items up for raffle. Tickets will be $1 each or 6 for $5, and all the money raised will be given directly to 826CHI.

"Fundraising is a thankless job," said Michelle Dortch, owner of Chel Decorative Accessories. "But they need to finish their renovation so they can focus all their energy and time on expanding their writing programs. We're hoping to turn some of our hot handcrafts into cold, hard cash for hem."

**** More information about the Chicago Craft Mafia is available at http://www.chicagocraftmafia.com Cinnamon Cooper can be reached by email at cinnamon@poise.cc or 773/655-6511. More information about 826CHI is available at http://www.826chicago.com or by calling 773/772-8108.

© 2006 Chicago Craft Mafia. Member of the Craft Mafia familia