Temperance Beer Co., Mack’s Bike and Goods support Evanston reparations fund


Photo courtesy of Temperance Beer Co. Designed by Maia Faith Hadaway.

The label of Temperance Beer Co.’s “Where I’m From” beer. Hadaway said the sketch embodies relief.

Emma Rosenbaum, Reporter

In designing the label for Temperance Beer Co.’s Black History Month beer, Maia Faith Hadaway selected the sketch that embodied relief.

The label depicts two people taking a deep breath, surrounded by leaves and next to a map of Evanston.

“For so long, for centuries, we’ve been holding our breath.” Hadaway said.

Revenue from a recreational cannabis tax makes up most of Evanston’s reparations fund, but residents can also make donations. As community leaders encourage residents to support reparations, some local businesses have committed to directing revenue toward the fund.

Temperance has a history of community involvement, owner Josh Gilbert said. So it seemed natural for the brewery to designate all proceeds from its Black History Month beer, called “Where I’m From,” toward the Evanston reparations fund. The beer launched on Jan. 29.

“I think there are some new customers that have never bought from us before who are coming out just because of this beer,” Gilbert said.

Mack’s Bike and Goods is also pitching in. Last month, owners Kelly Mack and Sam Mack committed to donate one percent of their monthly profits for the entire year toward reparations.

When they opened their shop last March, the Macks knew they wanted to make their store a community space. They said raising support for reparations is the right thing to do.

Kelly Mack said she and Sam have pages of ideas for ways to get their customers more involved. They want to host at least one event this spring or summer, where all proceeds go toward the reparations fund.

“It takes all of us in our community to stand for what we believe in,” Kelly Mack said.

Ald. Robin Rue Simmons (5th), chair of Evanston’s Reparations Subcommittee, said it is crucial the city’s reparations fund grows so the city can support its remedy proposals, and she appreciates the leadership of Mack’s Bike and Goods and Temperance Beer Co.

“I’m so encouraged to see the commitment from our allies, and from the business community, and others … to bridging the racial divide here in Evanston, empowering the Black community and righting our historic wrongs,” Rue Simmons said.

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