42nd Annual Cathedral Antiques Show & Tour of Homes
Cathedral Antiques Show helps Atlanta for 42 years; volunteers raise nearly $4 million for local charities.
“It changed our world.” Tanya Egins, “Cool Girls”
“It raised our visibility.” Kathy Keeley, “All About Developmental Disabilities”.
“It did wonders for us.” Walter Wright, Soul Changers Recovery Foundation
These are just a few of the accolades you hear from the numerous Atlanta non-profits that have benefited from the nearly $4 million raised over the last 42 years by the Cathedral Antiques Show and Tour of Homes.
Since the show was first established in 1969 as an outreach project of the Episcopal Women of Atlanta’s Cathedral of St. Phillip, the organizers have carefully selected one non-profit to be that year’s beneficiary. In the past, those proceeds have averaged more than $200,000, a substantial sum for most non-profits.
“We feel very fortunate to be chosen as this year’s beneficiary,” says Emily Pelton, executive director of Refugee Family Services. “The work that the cathedral volunteers do year after year is tremendous. They raise substantial amounts of money and then just give it all away. It’s quite amazing.”
It’s become quite a big deal within Atlanta’s non-profit community to be chosen as the CAS beneficiary, says Tanya Egins, deputy director of Cool Girls, the 2010 beneficiary. “The selection process is a tough, competitive one. A non-profit agency wears the honor with pride.”
The beneficiaries are carefully screened. Most have been in business for a number of years, but have increased needs for services or improved facilities, and that’s where the funding from CAS comes in.
The idea of raising money for charities through an antique show and home tour is not new, of course. Many groups do it across the country. But the uniqueness of the CAS is its commitment to quality (from the dealers to the designers to the beneficiaries) and its ability to sustain that commitment year after year in order to continue to serve a large metropolitan community.
“In addition to raising funds for the beneficiary, the show seeks to increase public awareness of the chosen organization, and often move it from a grass roots effort to a larger and more effective organization, putting it on a more solid foundation,” says Mary Elrod, who co-chairs the 2013 Cathedral Antiques Show and Tour of Homes along with Marion Williams.
Each January, around 300 dedicated women from the community and the congregation present what has become Atlanta’s must-see event. The Show and Tour of Homes is a demanding process for the volunteers, who give their time, talents, and financial support, as well. As soon as one year’s show ends, work on the next begins.
“We seek to partner with the chosen beneficiary and its board of directors to make the event a true success and the beneficiary more successful,” says Marion.
Today, the CAS is Atlanta’s oldest and largest antiques show, attracting over two dozen, carefully selected dealers from across North America (and sometimes Europe) with period furniture, art, jewelry, and accessories to sell to collectors from across the southeast.
The dealers arrive at the cathedral a few days before the Show opens. The volunteers have already transformed a large hall and atrium into a European-style setting for the show. The dealers begin setting up vignettes to display their antiques.
Across the way, some of the Southeast’s top interior designers have spent months transforming an historic home on the cathedral’s campus into the “The Inspiration House.” Each room features the talents of a different designer to inspire you, no matter your style or budget.
And then there’s the Tour of Homes, which includes some of Buckhead’s most exclusive domains, open to the public only one day a year. Homes on the 2013 Tour were designed or renovated by architects Philip Shutze, Norman Askins, McAlpine Tankersley, Stan Dixon, Gil Schafer, Charles Heydt and Ken Lynch.
Featured speakers, like this year’s Miles Redd, a New York-based interior designer/author and Atlanta native, and special events designed for young professionals add more interest to the week of activities.
How do the volunteers pull it off year after year, allowing for all net proceeds to go directly to the beneficiary? The show has no compensated employees, the cathedral and homeowners offer their spaces free of charge, and revenues come from corporate sponsors, individual patron contributions, dealer booth rentals, and ticket sales. In-kind contributions for services necessary to conduct the show help minimize the direct cash expenses.
After 42 years, the show’s volunteer organizers know how to present a successful event for all involved – the dealers, the collectors, the interior designers, the public, and, most importantly, the beneficiary.
Pelton continues to be amazed by the CAS volunteers. “It’s tremendous they put this much effort into an event and then make the conscious choice that they will give this back to the community to support real need. We don’t take it for granted.”
2013 Cathedral Antiques Show & Tour of Homes, Jan. 27-Feb. 3
Jan. 27 – Tour of Homes, 11a – 5p
Jan. 27; Jan. 31-Feb. 3 – Inspiration House, 11a – 5p
Jan. 30 – Preview Party, 7p – 9p
Jan. 31 – Feb. 2 – Antiques Show, 11a – 5p
Jan. 31 – Miles Redd: Talk & Book Signing, 11a
Feb. 1 – Drinks & Antiques, 7p – 9p
(special evening at the Show for young professionals)
Feb. 3 – First Place Passion Tour, 1p – 4p
(public tour of young professionals’ first homes)
CAS Beneficiaries Past 10 years
2012 – All About Developmental Disabilities
2011 – H.E.R.O. for Children, Inc.
2010 – Cool Girls, Inc.
2009 – Soul Changers Recovery Foundation
2008 – City of Refuge/180 Degree Kitchen
2007 – Truancy Intervention Project
2006 – Genesis Shelter
2005 – Georgia Justice Project
2004 – Families of Children Under Stress
2003 – Good Samaritan Health Center
2002 – My House
About the author: Rosemary Taylor is a member of Cathedral of St. Phillip, serves on the communications committee for the fundraiser, and is communications manager for the City of Johns Creek.