When the Riverside Associates of the Fourth created the group with the intention to increase funds to assist the village Independence Day actions and leisure, they experimented with a number of totally different strategies for elevating funds – from direct asks via their web site to GoFundMe campaigns.
T-shirt gross sales had been additionally a part of the combination, but it surely wasn’t till final yr that they discovered the key to success. Enlisting the abilities of native tattoo artist Patrick Cornolo, the Associates of the Fourth supplied up a colourful, psychedelic design that includes a dragonfly. The shirts flew off the shelf, elevating about $6,000.
“Prior to now on The Fourth we’d nonetheless have a lot of the shirts,” stated Joseph Ballerine, one of many Associates of the Fourth founders and now the village’s president. “Final yr I solely had about 50 left.”
Appears like this yr there’s going to be one other gross sales run.
Associates of the Fourth supplied this yr’s T-shirt on the market through their Fb web page on June 1. Gross sales had reached $1,050 inside 24 hours.
The design and its message apparently has lots to do with that. The sunshine blue shirt’s design options the Riverside water tower rising from the middle of a sunflower, with the colours recalling the flag of Ukraine.
“This yr as I’ve been driving round Riverside, I’ve observed a variety of sunflowers on doorways and Ukrainian flags,” stated Ballerine of the assist right here for the Ukrainian resistance towards the invasion launched by Russia in February. “I got here round to the concept that perhaps that is one thing persons are actually keen about.”
In response to Ballerine, 10 p.c of all proceeds from T-shirt gross sales will go to the Ukrainian Pink Cross.
Ballerine as soon as once more reached out to Cornolo, with a reasonably normal request.
“I feel my precise phrases had been, ‘Are you able to do one thing alongside the traces of ‘We stand with Ukraine?’” Ballerine stated.
Cornolo, who together with his spouse, Kelley, operates Speakeasy Customized Tattoo within the Wicker Park neighborhood of Chicago, accepted the problem.
“At first I had an thought of incorporating the Swinging Bridge or water tower and nature,” stated Cornolo, a resident of Riverside since 2015. “As soon as Joe talked about Ukraine – the sunflower is their image – that steered me into that route.”
Cornolo stated he designed the picture on his iPad over about 10 hours.
“I like dwelling right here; it’s such a cool little city with a lot to supply,” stated Cornolo. “I received so many compliments final yr [on the dragonfly design], that I used to be very stoked to do one other.”
Like final yr, stated Cornolo, native craft brewery BuckleDown Brewing is contemplating utilizing the design to make a label for a specialty beer that will likely be bought at Riverside Meals at the side of the village’s July 4 celebration.
The shirts, which are available each little one and grownup sizes in both Ukraine blue or black and white, are $25 every. You may order a T-shirt by visiting riverside-friends-of-the-fourth.cheddarup.com.