Episode 168 – TFAL Goes to Chicago: Entrepreneurship, NFTs, and Sneakers with Francis Almeda and Jeff Masangcay


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This episode rounds out the TFAL crew’s trip to the midwest. On this episode we talk to Francis Almeda, a Chicago based entrepreneur who owns Side Practice Coffee, Reppin Pins, and Filipinoadz. Francis explains what it was like to open a coffee shop in the middle of a pandemic. He also enlightens the crew on what NFTs are and how they work. Make sure to take note of the special TFAL code word that gets you something special at Side Practice Coffee!

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Side Practice Coffee, 5139 N Damen Ave, Chicago, IL 60625

The second interview in this episode is with Jeff Masangcay, founder of the non-profit Bata Sole. Bata Sole aims to collect & distribute new & used athletic shoes to impoverished communities. This journey originated from a trip Jeff took with his family to the Philippines. The trip sparked the idea for the non-profit and later Camp Sole, a youth basketball camp that also instills values of caring for your community. This conversation may lead to a few controversial basketball opinions (please note these are the sole opinions of Joe Bernardo and Joe Bernardo alone).

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Listen or download the episode through the embedded player on this page, find us on Mixcloud or subscribe to us on Apple Podcasts here. And for folks on Spotify, you can listen to us here.

Many thanks to the Filipino American community in the Chicago area. The team only scratched the surface on what Chicago has to offer. Where should the TFAL crew travel to next? Leave us a voicemail and let us know 805.394.TFAL or email us at thisfilipinoamericanlife@gmail.com.

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