Written By Holly Blackman
“People knock on our door all the time, Greg Jarrell (Founder of QC Family Tree) explained to me. “Lots of them say, ‘I need a job’, and we decided to bring up the idea that maybe we should start a business with some of those folks. We brought it to them in what we call a family (neighborhood) meeting. One young man who was 16 - jumped at the idea of wanting to start a (mobile) coffee cart, so we decided to approach Enderly Coffee. This made complete sense in the network of our relationships.”
Greg and his wife, Helms, have lived in Enderly Park since 2005 and began QC Family Tree not long after leaving seminary to encounter Jesus in the streets rather than the sanctuary. Greg and Helm’s hearts aligned with Tony & Becky’s and a neighborhood partnership quickly took root.
The QC Family Tree coffee cart folks served Enderly Coffee on a pop-up basis at festivals, parks, concerts, gatherings, etc., until Greg and his fellow neighbors were approached by people from Caldwell Presbyterian Church, a block or so away from Elizabeth Creamery off of 7th Street. This permanent coffee home is now called The Third Place Coffee, creating jobs for those who may have difficulty landing permanent employment, building community by giving families financial roots, skill building and management opportunities. The ultimate goal - generating wealth to funnel back into Enderly Park and building resumes one employee at a time.
Jane Jacobs, the urbanist and sociologist, talked about the importance of "third places" in building strong communities. Her idea was that such a place was not mine or yours, but a middle ground where we can engage. Neutral turf in some sense, but for the purpose of creating the deep connections that communities need to thrive.
Thus, the neighbors and friends of QC Family Tree from Enderly Park and members of Caldwell Presbyterian have created a home away from home for anyone to enjoy with hopes of it becoming a worker-owned cooperative structure. I echo Greg – “You won’t find a pour over better, but the mission is even better.”
As you walk in, you can grab your mug and make a donation of whatever amount you can afford (another way to be all inclusive of those who may just need a pick-me-up and resting place but don’t have the money to give that day). Maybe you’re searching for conversation or a comfortable workplace. If you’re anything like me, you loathe office space (but love the movie), and if this is the case, plan your next meeting at The Third Place. While I was there, I grabbed a cup of decaf joe to go (which I highly recommend if you're already caffeinated - Enderly's decaf is the best decaf I've ever had. So good, in fact that I kept it in my car and sipped on it for two days to savor it for longer!) Inside The Third Place, two older ladies reminded me of how big of a blessing my newborn is while two men worked and the baristas’ 1-year-old son kept my newborn entertained in his carrier.
This is what Enderly is all about – loving others & building community, and we’re proud to be served at The Third Place. As advertised on the chalkboard behind the counter, “Let us bring all our differences not to your place or my place, but to The Third Place where we meet on common ground”. We hope you’ll meet there and be a part of building community one cup of Enderly coffee at a time.