ASHEVILLE, N.C. — Asheville, a city celebrated for its vibrant arts scene and breathtaking natural landscapes, holds another facet of attraction that is rapidly gaining momentum: its thriving business community. On May 25th, 2023, the Asheville Masonic Temple resonated with the spirit of entrepreneurial enthusiasm and promise as it hosted Business in Color. A gathering designed to empower minority business owners and foster a more diverse and inclusive business landscape. It was a vivid portrayal of Asheville's commitment to making the American Dream real for all.
Organized by Eagle Market Streets, a non-profit organization that has been serving Western North Carolina since 1994, the event served as chance to introduce the community to the resources and opportunities that Eagle Market Streets provides. Their mission, to empower minority business owners, resonated with everyone in attendance, many of whom, like myself, are entrepreneurs, dreamers, and visionaries striving to create sustainable businesses and generate new jobs.
The evening was an embodiment of the spirit of Asheville's business community. It was about expanding networks, sharing ideas, and leaning on each other for support. Together, I felt like we were making a difference, working towards a more equitable and vibrant community.
Contributing to the evening's success were the local businesses that lent their support. Dreamboat Cafe provided the food, while Wicked Weed, a popular Asheville brewery, took care of the drinks. East Fork sponsored the plates, adding a touch of Asheville's unique style to the proceedings.
The venue, Asheville Masonic Temple, not just provided the space but also a sense of connection to the city's rich history. The Temple, opened in 1915 and designed by British American architect and Freemason Richard Sharp Smith, added a touch of historic charm to the evening.
In conclusion, Business in Color served as a potent reminder of the potential nestled within our diverse business community. It emphasized the importance of bolstering local businesses, fostering meaningful relationships, and working collectively towards the common goal of making the American Dream achievable for all.
My hope is that the images and the narrative of this event will inspire you, as they have me. May they ignite in you the drive to dream big, to work hard, and to ceaselessly strive for a more equitable and vibrant community. Because together, we can make a difference. Together, we can turn our dreams into reality.
Article & Photography by Brian Konutko
Food by Dreamboat Cafe
Drinks by Wicked Weed Brewing
Sponsored Plates by East Fork
Event for Eagle Markets Streets
Venue: Asheville Masonic Temple