Aces Over Eights – Suicide Prevention and Awareness Flash Event
This past Sunday there was a lot going on in Petaluma CA. There was a sizable antique fair in the quaint downtown, lots of tourists wandering about, a couple of baseball games on TV (being closely watched by fans at the charming Bleacher Critic -retail store complete with bleacher seats and large screen TV), pithy political signs in the window of the Sonoma Coast Surf and Skate, lots of cute dogs on leashes and people watching. But the real action was over at Aces Over Eights – an old school tattoo shop owned by Jimmy Bruce and Cody Holyoak and tucked right in the heart of downtown Petaluma.
A number of years ago Jimmy decided to help out a friend that was hit by some unexpected vet bills. He created a raffle with tattoos as the prize and although sadly the dog in need had died he was able to donate that money to local animal shelters. The giving back didn’t stop there, however. Jimmy continued to hold events to raise money for different animal charities for the next 4 years but last year he branched out. After the devastating fires that ravaged Sonoma county, last October Jimmy and his crew decided to up the ante and hold a walk up flash event and donate all the proceeds to help victims of the Sonoma fires. They tattooed non stop from noon to almost ten at night, tattooing close to 100 people and raised a serious chunk of money to boot.
This year Jimmy and Nick Rodin – a resident artist at the shop- turned their altruistic attention to a cause that is sadly close to home for them both. Suicide has touched both Jimmy and Nicks lives in a very personal way and together they decided to make this years event about supporting suicide awareness and prevention. With a solid track record of organizing charity events, Jimmy and Nick were able to gather a group of talented artists to assist the members of their own team with the goal of tattooing crisp, beautiful tattoos on as many people as they could in a day. They ended up with 11 artists total (hey they should form a baseball team!) and altogether they tattooed 47 people and raised a staggering $11,300 with tattoos and donations combined. Participating artists had two great sheets of flash to work with or folks could even bring their own flash to get tattooed. (Missed the event but still want to donate? Here is the LINK)
I was particularly impressed by how well organized this event was. It was obvious it wasn’t their first rodeo but holy hell – they started ON TIME! They had waivers, people contacting attendees by cell phone and getting them in the shop so that everything could roll smoothly, they were so well organized. Background support kept stations clean and stocked, Amy’s Kitchen set up a portable lunch station. The shop atmosphere was one of calm, focused professionalism. I was truly impressed. And a sharp, expertly applied tattoo in under an hour for a worthy cause? Are you kidding me?!
Aces Over Eights, Jimmy, Nick, and the entire team show us what a civic-minded, well-run shop staffed with dedicated artists that care about their community can do. My hats off to Aces Over Eights and the entire roster of artists (and extremely important support staff!) that made this meaningful event a possibility and a roaring success. Be sure to check out the participating artists Instagram and give these generous souls your business if possible. Contact Aces Over Eights if you would like to donate to their Suicide Prevention and Awareness event – they know all the right people to send your much-appreciated donation to. And by all means, if you find yourself in Petaluma check out this tiny shop with a big heart of gold.
PARTICIPATING ARTISTS – Give these artists some love…and some business!!!