By Chelsea Bray: Elle A. Design
Tuesday, September 29th is International Coffee Day. We want to use this day not only to celebrate coffee and how amazing it is, but to celebrate a local coffeehouse that makes top-notch coffee and has a story that everyone needs to hear. The Spotted Cow Coffeehouse is a unique location right here in Urbana, Ohio that employs people living with many different developmental disabilities. The owner, Bobbi, “envisions a continuous goal to build the lives of adults with disabilities.” The Spotted Cow Coffeehouse strives to help their employees build interpersonal skills, self-worth, self-esteem and give them a job they are proud to have.
As part of this process they not only want to teach their employees how to carry out their day-to-day tasks but to educate them on the origins of the coffee, products they carry, and how to prepare a great cup of joe. The result, as they put it, “adds a unique sweetness to every cup” and we couldn’t agree more. The drinks they serve are extra special thanks to the extra love, but also thanks to their amazing partners; Hemisphere Coffee Roasters and Downsize Farm.
Hemisphere Coffee Roasters is another inspirational local business, located in Mechanicsburg, Ohio. They have a huge passion for coffee, but also for helping people. They have built direct-trade relationships with the growers that produce their coffee beans to make sure they are being paid fairly and the income they receive will help their communities thrive. Their moto is “Good coffee doing good” and it really reflects in their business and even in the local relationships they build.
To fully paint a picture of all that The Spotted Cow Coffeehouse does for our community, we must also shine light on Downsize Farm, located in Woodstock, Ohio. At Downsize Farm they are fully devoted to the enrichment of the members’ lives. Their habilitation program for adults with developmental disabilities focuses on giving the participants tools and confidence to be part of their community. The family tie between The Spotted Cow Coffeehouse and Downsize farm is a story of love, family, happiness and heartbreak. With the guidance of her parents, Bob and Midge, and inspiration from her brothers, Eric and Levi, Bobbi has transformed a simple coffeehouse into a place that supports community members, gives people a sense of pride, and fosters daily opportunity.
Although currently you can’t stay inside to enjoy your beverage, you can still stop in and grab something to go at The Spotted Cow Coffeehouse. Feeling connected to the community is important to everyone and this year has made it a little harder to make that happen. If you have time, stop in for a drink and a quick chat. They also recently announced they are taking online orders - you can place an order here.
We hope you have an amazing International Coffee Day and take a minute to thank those special people in your life, your baristas, for everything they do! The phrase you will hear over and over again at The Spotted Cow Coffeehouse is “We are victors, not victims” and we could not agree more. Go out and seize the day!
By Chelsea Bray- Elle A. Design
It takes a big heart to teach little minds. Teachers are such an inspiration to us all and how can we ever thank them for all they do? These are challenging times, and our education systems have been quick to act creatively and out of passion. Also, within the past 9 months, the definition of a teacher has changed drastically as some parents have become teachers and homes have become classrooms. If you are wondering how you can thank your teachers, be sure to check out our top 5 gift suggestions to put a smile on your teachers face and make them feel appreciated.
Teabaggers Coffee, Tea & Wine Cafe – Urbana – Open Monday-Friday 9:05-3, Saturday 9:05-2
Is your teacher a coffee or wine lover? If so, you’re in luck! Teabaggers, right here in Urbana, offers a wide variety of gourmet teas and coffee, wines, mugs, t-shirts, and more! Gift cards are also available so your teacher can pick out their perfect gift. Stop into this beautiful family-owned business – and while you’re at it, treat yourself to an amazing lavender lemonade! Check out their Facebook page to see their drink and lunch specials!
Ethel's Flower's & Gift Shop – Urbana – Open Monday-Friday 9-5, Saturday 9-2
There’s no better time of year to show your teacher appreciation than fall! Ethel’s has a wide variety of fall florals, décor, and yummy goodies. Give them a call and place an order over the phone for delivery to your teacher, right at their desk. Add a box of Marie’s Candies for the perfect gift combo. Check out their website to see all of their beautiful arrangements.
Bello Salon – Urbana – Open by Appointment
Give the gift of pampering and relaxation. For the teacher who puts all of their students’ needs in front of their own, let’s give back. A Bello Salon gift certificate gives your teacher the choice of message therapy, hair styling, hair products, lashes, waxing, and more! Check out their facebook page and stop in to purchase a gift certificate for the person who has had such a positive impact on your life.
Let's Eat Cake – Urbana: Open Wednesday & Saturday 10-5, Thursday 10-6, Friday 9-6
Looking for a “sweet” way to show your teacher how much you appreciate them? Look no further than Let’s Eat Cake on Scioto Street. From cakes to cookies, brownies to cupcakes, they have all of the favorite flavors to satisfy a sweet tooth. Check out their facebook page and website and pick out the perfect treat for your teachers!
Schuler’s Bakery – Urbana – Open Sunday-Monday 6-8
Teachers are magical and so are Schuler’s Bakery donuts! Surprise your favorite teacher with donuts and coffee to start their day. Give them a call or stop in to pick out a few of their fan favorites, which are sure to be a hit with your teacher and class.
We want to say “Thank You” from the bottom of our hearts to all of our local teachers and parents, whether in-person, distance learning or homeschooling. You amaze and inspire us daily!
By Chelsea Bray- Elle A. Design
Fall is an amazing time of year. The leaves change from their bright green to vibrant shades of red, yellow, and orange leaving everyone craving pumpkin pie and apple cider. Decorating your home with locally found fall décor will bring that feeling of comfort you can only find on a crisp fall morning. No matter what area of your home you want to decorate or what your budget is, you are sure to find the perfect item at one of these great local shops. Enjoy our virtual fall décor showcase as we walk you through just some of what Champaign County has to offer!
Seth’s Produce and Garden Center – Urbana – Open Every Day 9-7
This is the go-to spot for pumpkins and gourds! You can expect pumpkins to start arriving mid-September and they have a large selection of colors and sizes so you will be sure to find your perfect jack-o-lantern pumpkin. They already have mums of all colors in stock that are ready for that perfect spot on your front porch or in your flowerbed. Along with all of their amazing fall décor, they also have fresh produce so you can prepare a fall soup or stew to end your day with. Check out their Facebook page to see what is fresh this week!
Ethel’s Flowers and Gift Shop – Monday-Saturday 9-5
Fall is the best time of the year to get a fresh bouquet of sunflowers. If you want something longer lasting, they also carry potted sunflowers that can brighten up any room. They have been putting out their new fall décor the past couple of weeks which includes velvet pumpkins, wall signs, and candy corn inspired metal pennants. To top off their amazing selection of décor they also carry Marie’s Candies that you can add to any order for delivery or you can just pick up a box for yourself! They are constantly getting new inventory so follow them on Facebook to see the latest décor.
David’s Greenhouse – Monday-Saturday 9-5
At David’s Greenhouse in St. Paris you will find a variety of blooming fall flowers including mums and flowering kale. They also have other great porch decor like gorgeous fall wreaths to dress up your front door. Throughout the year they offer opportunities to hold fundraisers for your church, school or organization. Make sure you check out their Facebook page to keep up to date on what they have going on all year long!
Chateau Farms – Urbana – Open Every Day 10-6
Chateau farms has over 90 different varieties of fall mums, asters, and flowers kale. They offer different sizes and also have hanging baskets for your front porch. They sell at local festivals and markets as well as at their new retail location. If you still can’t make it to them, they will come to you! They offer delivery on bulk orders so you and your friends can get together and place an order to be shipped directly to you. If this is the first time you have planted mums there are some great tips on their website to help you as well.
Official voting for the Best of Champaign County will be October 1st-31st. Voters are asked to donate $1 per vote to the Chamber of Commerce, so that it can continue to carry out its mission to connect Champaign County by promoting members and inspiring collaboration by offering resources and opportunities to enhance our community. Nominations and ballots will be accepted online, by mail, email or in person at the Chamber of Commerce located at 127 W. Court St. in Urbana.
Chamber Director, Sara Neer, explains, “With so many events being cancelled and postponed this year due to Covid the Chamber and Board of Directors thought long and hard about a fundraiser that we could carry out virtually to replace our in person events that we rely on for revenue to keep the Chamber in business. The Best of Champaign County contest does a few things: promotes local businesses, educates and involves the community, and assists the Chamber in raising funds by implementing a ‘donate to vote’ feature.”
In a normal year the Chamber hosts monthly lunch & learns, business after hours networking events, first friday coffee hours, Safety Council meetings, Leadership Champaign County, along with other larger events. “We want to do all we can to continue providing valuable resources to our members and the community throughout this trying time and we hope that Champaign County will support our newest fundraiser”, says Chamber Board President, Tom Coles, “Small businesses add to the uniqueness of our county and we want to involve the community in recognizing and celebrating all that makes Champaign County a great place to live, work and play.”
Join FocalPoint Business Coach Scott Brown for a workshop focused on teaching you 5 key things to help you: 1.) Understand why we don't get better information 2.) Identify what can we do as leaders to get better information 3.) Develop your personal plan to transition from firefighting to fire prevention.
This event is FREE. October 6, 2020 from 12PM - 1PM. Click here to register today!
By Chelsea Bray: Elle A. Design
Driving down US Highway 68 you will find many amazing stops but travel slightly off the beaten path and you will find an absolute treasure. Dragonfly Vineyard and Wine Cellar is located between West Liberty and Urbana on Herr Road. This beautiful location is owned and operated by Kent and Connie Eichenauer. They planted their first four acres of grapes in 2011 with no intention of operating their own winery. Eventually Kent got curious enough to start making wine in their basement and their very first Riesling was produced.
Early on Kent became involved in the viticulture program through Ohio State and the Wine Producers Association. This helped him form great relationships with other local winemakers. Their support from fellow Ohio winemakers helped guide them on this incredible journey.
They invested in their own equipment to harvest, crush, ferment and store their own vineyard grapes and started serving their homemade wine to friends and family. The response was more than they could have imagined and the support and encouragement to open their own winery pushed them to begin their new adventure.
They opened Dragonfly Vineyard and Wine Cellar in June 2019. They currently grow four acres of grapes including Vidal, Blanc, Cabernet Franc, Marquette and LaCreseant. They have neighbors who grow Frontenac that they harvest also. Their knowledge and love for wine really shines through in each bottle.
If you are interested in visiting Dragonfly Vineyard and Wine Cellar, they are currently open Thursday from 5:00-9:00PM and Friday and Saturday 12:00-9:00PM. There are some new guidelines they are implementing during COVID-19 and you can see them all on their website. They sometimes have live music and other events happening at the vineyard and you can find more info about those on their facebook page.