Habitat for Humanity of Long Island, located at 643 Middle Country Road in Middle Island, brewed up a fundraiser which was as effervescent and refreshing as opening a nice cold one. The organization dedicated to building affordable homes on Long Island put the “fun” in fundraising as they held “The House Beer Built” on Dec. 22, hosted by Freedom Brewing Corp., located at 921 Lincoln Avenue in Holbrook, from 7 to 10 p.m. It featured the rollicking tunes of the band the Sitting Ducks, and the popular Rollin Ghost food truck also stopped by to lift spirits with their hearty fare. There were also $5 beer specials, in addition to the main event of selling gift cards to raise funds toward building another affordable home on Long Island.
If you missed this event, don’t let that make your proverbial beer go flat. This is part of a larger initiative, where Habitat for Humanity are partnering with more than 20 local breweries and bars to sell craft brew and spirits cards for the beer afficionado in your life, or why not treat yourself while feeling good about helping others build a better life for themselves right here in our area? The crafty cards are good for one complimentary drink at each participating establishment represented on the cards, which are $50 per card and worth more than $200. Who wouldn’t drink to that?
The funds raised will be used toward building yet another of the many affordable homes Habitat for Humanity have made possible on Long Island, where the cost of living has skyrocketed, making the American dream of home ownership something that seems forever out of reach for many. “The House Beer Built”—which will be celebrated with a wall raise in summer 2023—will include representatives from each of the participating breweries or bars who will work on a build site, alongside the Habitat for Humanity staff, as well as with volunteers and future homeowners, to frame and raise the walls of this new edifice, which will become a home and someone’s dream come true.
Participating partners in this mission include the following local venues: Blue Point Brewing, The Tap Room (all four locations) Aroogas, The Village Idiot (all three locations), Freedom Brewing, Spider Bite, 1940’s Brewing, Peconic County Brewing, Twin Fork Brewing, ubergeek, the Brewers Collective, Destination Unknown, Great South Bay, Ghost, South Shore Brewing, and more.
“Freedom Brewing offered to do the ‘House Beer Built’ event to sell beer cards before the holidays. They have been very generous with us. We sold quite a few cards and got the word out for Habitat for Humanity,” said Dawn Marie Dioguardo, senior director of development for Habitat for Humanity of Long Island. Dioguardo explained how the organization facilitates lifechanging results for those who are qualified.
“It’s a hand-up, not a handout, so our Habitat homeowners do 90 hours of financial preparedness classes with the bank,” she explained. In addition, those who fit the criteria must have good credit, be employed, and make a certain amount of yearly income to be considered for this amazing opportunity, ideal for the right candidate.
“There are 24 locations on the card, and it’s good for a year. We are selling them through the end of March. You can buy them on our website. We raised over $10,000, only doing two weeks. We’ve sold 250 cards now. Our goal is to reach 1000. We’re selling them through March, so they could be a good Valentine’s gift, or go with friends, see some breweries, all in these commercial areas, “said Dioguardo, referring to all the hidden treasures, such as Freedom Brewing, in these Business District enclaves, which many assume only hold corporate offices.
The Habitat for Humanity director made sure to express the organization’s gratitude to the co-owners of Freedom Brewing, Mike Digregorio and Bob Gugliotta, for hosting the successful event. The new artisanal brew and live-music venue just opened in 2019, as a brewing company; however, it was only two months ago that they opened their establishment to patrons.
“We’re really happy with the turnout. We have the Rollin Ghost food truck here—they are really great guys—and the [Sitting Ducks] band does a lot with Habitat for Humanity, volunteering their time,” Digregorio said.
For more information on Habitat for Humanity of Long Island, to purchase beer cards, inquire about volunteering, check out upcoming events, or to apply for assistance visit habitatLINY.org.