At the end of the week Joe shot up the flare: The Greenville Avenue St. Patrick's Day Parade is in danger of getting adiosed, unless the Greenville Avenue Area Business Association can raise $40,000 to cover the ever-escalating costs of the event. Since then a few fundraising sites have popped up to help raise the green, though as the bossman noted Monday, there's only one operating with GAABA's blessing (and it's raised about $800, a fraction of a fraction of what's needed).
But since Friday, I've wondered -- and so have many, many Friends of Unfair Park -- about using CrowdTilt, which helped the Deep Ellum Community Association raise around $14,000 in 30 days for the community garden they want to plant at Canton and Good-Latimer. So I went over to the site, typed in "Greenville Avenue Parade," and up popped this: We Have to Save the St. Paddy's Day Parade!
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James Beshara, the site's CEO and founder, tells Unfair Park he and his CrowdTilters decided to start the fundraising page themselves, in part because they were inundated with emails. "Out of the hundreds of campaigns that have been on the site," says Beshara, "this is top five, easily."
But the thing is, Beshara and the rest of the CrowdTilters no longer live in Dallas: They picked up and moved to Palo Alto five weeks ago, at the behest of investors who sunk much money into the site in December. Which is one reason among many that they're looking for someone to act as the administrator for the page. They're hoping GAABA President Jorge Levy will take it over.
"We need someone who can pay closer attention to it over the next few weeks, someone who can push it," he says. "If they feel it's their mission to push it, it becomes powerful. And it's less self-serving. We don't want it to come off like we're pushing our site. We don't want to make it look like we're capitalizing on this opportunity. We've reached out to people who've contacted us to see if they want to do it. We'd like to get someone from GAABA to back it. And, truthfully, now that we're in California, we're a little bit separated from the cause."
Which didn't stop CrowdTilt from kicking in $1,000 in order to launch the fundraising page.