Progress Report – Licensing, Banking, and Everything in Between!

One of the main purposes of this blog is to keep you up to date on Cupid’s Landing’s progress.  I realized I haven’t given you any updates yet, so here is your first one!  And what a great day for it – lots of accomplishments today!

First, let’s get you up to speed on everything that has happened prior to today.  The four main legal steps to getting this business started are: obtain Washington state business license, file articles of incorporation, obtain city of Tacoma business license, and apply for 501(c)(3) tax exempt status.  I have already received my Washington state business license, and recently filed articles of incorporation.  The latter means that I am officially recognized as a nonprofit organization in the state of Washington!

I was very excited to receive this certificate in the mail about a week and a half ago!  To clarify, this does not mean that Cupid’s Landing is a registered 501(c)(3).  501(c)(3) means tax exempt from the IRS.  It is something that only nonprofits can obtain, but an organization does not have to be tax exempt to be nonprofit.  Never fear – applying for tax exemption is on the to-do list!  First, I must obtain my city of Tacoma business license.  For now, if you choose to donate to Cupid’s Landing, your donations are not tax deductible.  I expect that to change within the next three months.

Back to today – This morning, I spent some time on the phone with my good friend, Hannah.  Hannah I have been friends pretty much since we were born because our mothers went to school together and are also friends.  Hannah is an incredibly talented web designer.  (Her web design studio is called Splatypus – check out her work, especially this website for Jens and Marie, a Rhode Island based brand of vegan veggie burgers!)  Hannah has been giving me some much needed instruction and advice with the blog, as well as helping me design a logo.  Stay tuned for the logo, and for some new features on the blog, like a “Donate Now” button.

After our phone conversation, I got lunch at an all vegan restaurant in Tacoma called Viva with my friend, Áine.   Áine is a full time Gig Harbor, WA based artist, and a fellow vegan.  (Check out her work at L.A. Kmen Designs.  She makes her own paper!)  She has experience working with nonprofits, particularly in grant writing.  I was recently informed about this amazing grant opportunity from So Delicious brand dairy-free products.  The 140 Grant Contest  is a series of grants and micro-grants that are awarded to people with big ideas for projects relating to sustainability and conservation, animal welfare, plant-based food, and food allergies.  I think the Cupid’s Landing project fits right in!  Áine gave me some great advice to start brainstorming, and we will continue to put our heads together until the contest is over on May 31st.  Cross your fingers for me!  I’ll keep you posted.

After lunch, I headed over to the bank and opened a business account for Cupid’s Landing.  (Actually, I went there before lunch, and then learned that I needed an Employer Identification Number to open the account.  So I went back home, applied for the EIN, got lunch, and then went back to the bank.)  I deposited $85, which is the amount that was raised at our first fundraiser on April 10th.   I am hosting monthly vegan cooking demos where donations of any amount are accepted.  April was a success!  Stay tuned for details about the upcoming demo in May.

Overall, I had an exhausting and exciting day, leaving me feeling very accomplished.  Everything is off to a great start!  I’m so happy that you are joining me on this project, even by doing something as simple as reading this blog.   If you have ideas, questions, suggestions, help to offer, or anything else, please do not hesitate to contact me.