Our Third Annual Holiday Gift List event is now over, and was our most successful one ever, with over 100,000 unique visitors checking out the CoffeeGeek site between November 20th and December 31rst, viewing over 2 million pages on this website!
For the first time (but certainly not the last), we had a major fund raising drive for CoffeeKids: Grounds for Hope. 45 people took the time and effort to donate funds to CoffeeKids through this fund raiser, and collectively, those generous people donated $1,720 to this excellent cause. We had five corporate sponsors who would match dollar for dollar up to $500 total, so that added another $2,500 to the kitty. CoffeeGeek also matched dollar for dollar up to $1,500, and we're matching those funds. Finally, CoffeeGeek was also donating a major portion of our advertising revenue from the Holiday Gift List, adding yet another $2,250 to the donations, giving us a grand total of $7,970 raised for CoffeeKids!
While we didn't meet our goal of $10,000 raised, the numbers are good for a first time event, and we're happy that we've been able to raise awareness for CoffeeKids and the excellent work they are doing. Next year, we hope to make the fund raiser even bigger and more successful, and we will hopefully organize things even better so that hundreds of CoffeeGeek readers can show their generosity. You can continue to show your support right now - donate today, donate all year if you can - they need your help, and do awesome work in coffee producing nations.
Holiday Gift List Sweeps Contest Winners!
Now for the news everyone wants to know - the winners of this year's Holiday Gift List contest!
Grand Prize, a Year's Worth of Coffee!
Intelligentsia Coffee, a sponsor in our Dollar for Dollar campaign with CoffeeKids, also donated an amazing prize of one pound of coffee delivered to the winner's door, every week for 52 weeks, and the winner of this amazing prize is Lissa Potter, of Hazel Park, Michigan. No more swilling the Starbucks for Lissa with this prize :) (seriously though, Lissa is a dedicated home roaster who drinks coffee, not espresso, and this prize will give her a variety of Intelligentsia's best each week).
Lissa was happy when told of her prize:
I'd thought the highlight of my week was my new moka pot coming in, but this definitely tops a new coffee maker. I've read about Intelligentsia sponsoring the alties meet last year, and heard praise of their coffees, so the chance to try their coffee both makes me salivate and makes me feel even more a part of the good coffee drinkers' community. I home roast, and it has been a few years since I drank coffee I hadn't roasted myself so having good, artistically roasted coffee to compare with mine ought to be very educational.
Coffeegeek.com has been one of the two websites I depend upon for coffee information. I enjoy the links to coffee news, the reviews both official and from other users and lurk in the forums. I've especially enjoyed the coverage of the plight of specialty coffee growers, and have sent links to articles covering this to friends who are environmentalists and political activists. To have won anything is shocking (I did once win a book, years ago), but to win it from coffeegeek.com and Intelligentsia really floors me. It inspires me to find more ways to give back and more people to turn to the joys of good coffee.
First Prize Winners
We have three first prize winners, all winning some very cool prizes provided by the HGL sponsors.
Rancilio Silvia Espresso Machine, 1st Line Equipment
The winner of the Rancilio Silvia is Jason Molinari of Atlanta, Georgia, home of this year's SCAA Trade Show. Jason won through an entry he garnered by leaving a comment on one of the HGL items. He was also very happy when told about the prize he won:
WOW! What a GREAT prize, I had pretty much forgotten about the contest, so this is definitely a pleasant surprise. I'm planning on bringing the machine to work with me, and setting up a sort of mini espresso. I can finally have outstanding espresso at work, I've been using a Nespresso pod machine, but this is far superior, I can use any of my homeroasted blends! I wonder how much my coworkers will appreciate the smell of a freshly brewed espresso, and freshly roasted beans. I'll have to match this up with a quality grinder.
Thanks 1st Line for the prize and for supporting the world of coffee, and thanks CoffeeGeek for providing an avenue for us crazed coffee drinkers to discover, learn and enjoy drinking this strange brew concocted from dried, burned and ground fruit pits!:)
Gaggia Classic Espresso Machine, from Whole Latte Love
Another awesome prize provided by one of our HGL sponsors is the Gaggia Classic espresso machine, and the winner of this prize is Bruce Bouchard, of Burnaby, BC. Bruce was understandably happy with the news:
What a thrill to be one of the lucky winners! CoffeeGeek is a big help in boosting coffee knowledge, and now I can put more and more new knowledge to the test with this great prize. There is so much more to learn about quality coffee than I realized and CoffeeGeek is a great resource for opening my eyes (not just talking about effective caffeine delivery vehicles).
Thank you to Whole Latte Love for sponsoring this prize and all the CoffeeGeek folks for your dedication to sharing the knowledge! 'bean' there but yet not done all that...
Saeco Vienna Super Auto, from Aabree Coffee Co.
Aabree ponied up a super auto as a First Prize, and the Saeco Vienna Super Automatic has a prize winner: Thomas Geibel, of Courtland, NY. Here's what Thomas had to say:
I'm just thrilled to win this Saeco Vienna Super Automatic from Aabree Coffee Co. and Coffeegeek. We have an extended sailing cruise planned for the summer of 2004 on Lake Ontario and the small size and quick warm-up of this machine will make running it from inverted battery power possible.
I'm really looking forward to offering my fellow boaters a hot cup of espresso as we bob around in the Thousand Islands if the thaw out after the winter that we are having. Thanks again and looking forward to giving a super automatic a try.
Second Place Prizes
We had a bevy of cool second place prizes to give away, here's the winners' list:
Capresso CoffeeTEC Coffee Maker from Aabree Coffee Company: The winner is Andrew Chen, of Calgary, Alberta. Andrew saw this prize as an unexpected perk coming from a website he just enjoys visiting:
I did not come to CoffeeGeek.com to win any prize, but for all its best resources about coffee, and even beyond, about my lifestyle.
Solis Maestro Plus Coffee Grinder, from 1st Line Equipment. The winner of this great grinder is Ron Lewen, of Chicago, Illinois. Ron had this to say when he was told he won:
I first found CoffeeGeek while researching the purchase of an espresso machine for Christmas. Like most beginners, I had no idea what I was getting into! The information I found at CoffeeGeek was a huge help in my research. I started out looking at a low end espresso machine and had never considered buying a good grinder. After spending a short amount of time on CoffeeGeek I realized the importance of freshly ground coffee in the espresso-making process. Now, thanks to the Holiday Gift List Giveaway Sweeps at Coffeegeek and to 1st Line Equipment, LLC I have a good grinder! I'm thrilled to win the Solis Maestro Plus. It will find an immediate home in my kitchen, right next to my espresso machine!
Dominic Williams, of San Ramon, California, is the winner of our third Secon Prize, a Capresso CoffeeTEAM Luxe coffee maker and grinder combo, from Whole Latte Love. Dominic had this to say:
It is such a rewarding feeling to win something from my favorite hangout, Coffeegeek.com and one of the premier espresso retailers in the USA, Whole Latte Love. I am excited about this prize because it looks like an awesome coffee machine and I have a double wedding to attend in the next few months and I can spread coffee love to close friends. I want to thank Coffeegeek.com and Whole Latte Love for such an awesome prize.
Third Place Prizes
We had some great third place prizes to give away as well!
From Whole Latte Love we had their Coffee Sampler to give away, and Ron Eric Edrosa of Aurora, Illinois is the winner of this prize.
Peter Bishop of Bellport, New York won a Bodum Antigua grinder from Aabree Coffee. In black, no less! :)
And Caroline Herzfeld from Closter, New Jersey won a prize from 1st Line Equipment: a Froth n Sauce automatic frother.
Once again, congratulations to all the prize winners, and thank you to everyone for participating. Look for our next exciting contest promotion coming up soon: a full four nights accommodation at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Atlanta, Georgia, during the 2004 SCAA Conference and Trade Show! This new contest is sponsored by 1st Line Equipment has a value of close to $1,000! It's coming soon!