We are Closing, but NOT Closed!
Many of you have likely heard that Tallahassee Mall is now under new ownership that plans to renovate and reinvigorate the facility. They have many plans for the mall, however, those plans do not include The Family Tree.
We have been provided notice that our tenancy has come to an end and we must move out, in a bit of a hurry. The Center needs to be packed up and moved in (now) less than two weeks. The Mall’s decision to begin terminating non-retail tenants, while understandable towards their longer term goals, is causing us and likely other tenants some unexpected disruption and heartache.
Given the short turnaround time, and that we haven’t been looking for an alternate space, the Center will be closed and our books, furniture, supplies and other items will be moved into storage for the next few months. The Center has about 4,000 LGBT-related books, dozens of chairs, numerous tables, not to mention event supplies, office supplies, desks, etc, all of which need to be packed up and moved. To that end, we could use your help. How can you help:
- Boxes. We need lots of boxes!
- We need packing tape and other packing supplies.
- Volunteers to help pack up the facility.
- Volunteers to help move everything into storage.
- Storage space. We have a lead on space that may be donated, but just in case, if you have access to or a lead on storage space (particularly climate controlled space for the books, etc. that require it), please let us know.
- Office space. While we look for a future home for the community center, it would be great to have an office space to work from, especially one that could facilitate board and other meetings. If you have a space to donate or know of a potential one, please let us know.
- Donate. Not everyone can help pack or move and we completely understand. If you would still like to do something to help, contributions are encouraged. Even if most of the supplies and labor are donated, there are lots of expenses associated with moving, not to mention securing a new facility.
It isn’t feasible to move everything into storage. During our open hours this weekend, ALL remaining inventory of retail pride items, including books and cards, will be ON SALE. Priced to move! We will also be selling other misc items that we won’t be moving to storage. Be sure to come by and check it out!
We knew our time at the Tallahassee Mall was likely going to end in the near future, we just didn’t realize it was going to be this soon. Until a new location is found and secured, we will work remotely to provide the community with information and resources, and hopefully plan some fun community events through partnerships with other organizations. Our goal is to secure a new location by the end of this year. To do so we will need your support and your input.
Recently, we had begun preliminary work to develop a long term strategic plan for the organization. The effort includes targeted outreach to the community as well as an online and paper-based survey. Given the closing of the mall location, we are adding to the survey and outreach efforts questions related to the future of the Center. We will be seeking your input on what you want the future Community Center to look like. What sort of facility should it be? Where in town it should be located? What features does it need? Central to the mission of The Family Tree is to meet the needs of the community and we want to ensure that our future facility serves to meet those needs as well. Look for the survey in your inbox in the near future.
In the mean time, if you are interested in helping pack or have boxes, etc., please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
. If you don’t have the time or ability to help pack, consider a donation to help defray the costs. The Center will remain open for normal hours this week and weekend, as well as represent the community at the Celebrate America event in Tom Brown Park on July 4 from 3pm until after the fireworks. Volunteers will also be working at the Center next week, however, we will not be maintaining the normal posted hours.