When Vulcan Vape's two owners quit their 20-year cigarette-smoking habits after trying Joyetech eGo-T e-cigarettes, they were so impressed that they decided to open their own e-cigarette and e-liquid shop. They now have three locations, where they equip patrons with everything from starter kits to accessories to e-liquids in such flavors as belgian waffles. Vulcan Vape also has various videos on its blog that teach vapers useful tips, including how to attach an upgraded battery or wind turbine to a starter kit to make the charge last longer.
On the morning of September 11, 2001, Robert Herzog dropped off his laundry, picked up his mail, and took the local C train to work instead of the express A train. When he arrived for work at the north World Trade Center tower that morning, nearly 300 of his coworkers were dead. Stunned by his inexplicable escape from death, Herzog battled through his trauma by focusing on the good things in his life. Earlier that year, he met his wife-to-be playing coed softball. He had enjoyed the league but felt he could do better. Tempered by the sense of charity and community that was so ubiquitous after September 11, he opened ZogSports—a sports league that donates 10% of its profits to charity—in 2002.
Since then, leagues have spread from New York and the northeast out to Atlanta and the Twin Cities. Casual competitors in their 20s and 30s team up in touch-football leagues and indoor-volleyball leagues, making new friends on the field, at postgame happy hours, and at preseason press conferences.
When teams sign up for ZogSports's leagues, they choose a charity to represent. From there, teams compete to win the league championship, come up with the funniest team name, or order the most drinks at the bar after the game, all of which earn them money for their charity of choice. To date, the company has donated more than $1.5 million to various charities.
Bates Ace Hardware has been inspiring ambitious homeowners since 1921 with rows upon rows of home-improvement implements, household appliances, and domestic essentials. The shop’s technicians are certified to perform warrantee repair tasks for lawn mowers, power equipment, and karaoke machines from manufacturers including Stihl, Snapper, and Honda, while their salespeople are trained to answer nearly any home-improvement question their customers ask. Inside, a wide selection of hardware, paint, plumbing, and electrical supplies shares space with gifts, home decor, men's and women's clothing, and housewares. Customers can venture outside to find a variety of power equipment and a dedicating cooking area, while the garden section brims with bagged mulch and soil, along with a variety of plants from Monrovia Nursery when spring rolls around.
Formerly Atlanta Brewing Company, Red Brick Brewing Company holds the title of Georgia's oldest craft brewery. The brew masters whip up a host of complex, craft beers, from an American IPA to a smoked vanilla porter. They also offer tours and tastings, providing samplings and insight into the nuanced fundamentals of beer creation. The tasting room, lounge, and Red Brick warehouse provide ample space for private events, and Thursday and Friday nights are open to the public for team trivia, live music, and discussions about the latest fashions in lampshade headwear.
The technicians at Elite Auto Spa of Atlanta bring 20 years of combined experience to every smudge and speck of dirt they encounter. It seems like nothing is beyond their talents; when they aren't keeping high-end luxury rides shiny and spotless, they're given new life to mud-crusted pickups.
Their secret?if you can call it that?is an uncommon attention to detail. The techs target dirt, mud, tar, and spills of all kinds, waxing and polishing until they've returned each vehicle to factory-fresh condition. They're certified by the Window Tinting Association of America, and they can also install mobile electronics that range from full speaker systems to traffic-clearing flamethrowers.
The Furniture Bank collects furnishings from area donors and stores them in a fully secured storage house, from which the items can be delivered to households in need. Through its Furniture Distribution Program, the organization provides on average 14 pieces of furniture to each of its client families, including a bed for each family member, a sofa, and items such as dressers, bookshelves, and coffee tables. Every year, it distributes furniture to more than 3,000 people, more than 1,700 of whom are children. But despite the generosity of the Furniture Bank's donors, the need for children's bedding often outnumbers donations, as most donated beds are full- or queen-sized. The Furniture Bank purchases twin mattresses to fill the void, ensuring each child who needs a bed receives one.