By Jennifer Smith
The Skunk & Goat Tavern is having a birthday party this weekend in honor of its second year in business on West Main Street.
This celebration is about much more than cake. It’s about celebrating a year of important moments with the North East community.
Each month in 2019, The Skunk & Goat Charity Cocktail raised a glass to toast the work of local organizations. One dollar from every sale went to support Crescent and Fuller hose companies, Community Nursing Services, Food Pantry, Lions Club, Pattie’s Pink Warriors, Project Love, School Supply Drive, Sports Boosters, Women’s Club, Kaleidoscope, New Blossoms New Life and autism awareness. In all, nearly $4,000 was raised.
Of the 25 employees at The Skunk & Goat, 22 live here in North East, including Chef Justin Boland and General Manager Christina Davis. So being a part of community events, especially those in the nearby Gibson Park, was also a priority, Davis said.
In 2019, The Skunk and Goat participated in Picnic in the Park, and took the lead with other community organizations to coordinate the downtown crosswalk art project, sponsor the Summer Concert Series that brought the Erie Philharmonic to North East for three free outdoor concerts, establish the Pet Parade and orchestrate the return of the Miller Mistletoe Mile, which drew more than 350 runners and raised more than $6,000 for at-risk youth served by The Door Inc.
Just a few weeks ago, The Skunk and Goat sponsored a community night with the Erie Bayhawks that was attended by nearly 350 and raised close to $4,000 for the North East School District.
“We wanted to bring an experience to the community, something that would have a positive impact on the students and their families,” said Annē Lewis, an NEHS grad and director of marketing for Red Letter Hospitality, which manages The Skunk & Goat. “Growing up playing basketball at North East, I knew that this would be something that would really resonate and get me excited to continue to be a motivated athlete. I wanted students to feel the same way.”
Partnering with other local businesses to showcase what makes North East great is also a priority.
In November, The Skunk & Goat teamed up with The Straw Hat to create ice cream sandwiches offered at both eateries. They feature Penn State Berkey Creamery ice cream and cookies baked fresh at The Skunk & Goat.
Throughout 2020, the products of local wineries will be featured at The Skunk & Goat. January introduced diners to three selections from Yori Wine Cellars, while February will feature Courtyard Winery.
“With so many beautiful wineries in our area, we wanted to spotlight them at The Skunk & Goat,” said Lewis.
In honor of all these accomplishments, The Skunk & Goat Tavern will host a second birthday celebration, Feb. 6-9. It includes cake, live music and $2 tavern ales.