This story has been updated
When Jeff Zearfoss moved his brewery into the 122-year-old The Carter Payne Church four years ago, he said he saw a unique opportunity to turn his business into more than a bar.
Now that business — Local Relic — which Zearfoss co-owns, is not only profitable but also a force for good.
Local Relic, among a dozen other businesses with a sense of community, will be featured in Impact Saturday, a self-guided tour of social enterprises downtown.
The event — sponsored by the Downtown Partnership and the Colorado Institute for Social Impact — will give participants a chance to meet with the thought leaders behind 13 social enterprises, sample their products and learn about the charitable causes fueling each business, said Claire Swinford, director of urban engagement at the partnership.
Today, Local Relic, 320 S. Weber St., offers more than its intentionally esoteric beers, Zearfoss said. It houses a monthly rotating art show to showcase local artists and aims to make a positive impact on the community.
Colorado Springs has become a national leader in social enterprise by supporting one of the highest concentrations per capita of businesses seeking to make a greater impact on the local community, Swinford said.
To be considered a social enterprise, businesses, whether for profit or nonprofit, must pursue a mission rooted in helping the community alongside serving clientele, Swinford said. For example, she said, while The Men’s Xchange is a donation-based thrift boutique that caters to men’s business and professional attire, they also dress young men for success who otherwise could not afford it.
Other businesses span a spectrum of impact, ranging from a catering company providing jobs to people exiting homelessness to a brewery that turns suds into a social service, said Laurel Prud’homme, vice president of communications for the Downtown Partnership.
Jonathan Liebert, CEO of the Colorado Institute for Social Impact, said more and more businesses nationally are focusing on social impact.
“With conscious consumers on the rise, they are looking to purchase products and services from companies that give back to their communities and provide additional value to stakeholders,” he said.
In all, Colorado Springs has 20 social enterprises operating within the community. The 13 that will be featured on Saturday are:
Local Relic at the Carter Payne, co-hosted by Colorado Craft Tours, Kangaroo Coffee, Immerse Cuisine, Mission Catering, and Who Gives a Scrap
The Men’s Xchange, co-hosted by TechWears
Mountain Equipment Recyclers, co-hosted by Kids on Bikes
Eclectic CO, co-hosted by Hidden Lotus Crafts, Kairos Traders, Urbean and Yobel Market
Energy Resource Center
The Wild Goose Meeting House
The ReStore, co-hosted by Blue Star Recyclers
Solar Roast Coffee
Who Gives a Scrap
Tickets to Impact Saturday cost $10 and include behind-the-scenes tours of each business. VIP tickets are available for $45. For more information, visit ImpactSaturday.com.