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March 24, 2017

And so it begins…

I’d like to officially announce The Spot on Main, a new coffee house and gathering place in downtown Jackson, Ohio. We have aggressive plans to open the end of May! My family took possession of the historic building (formerly occupied for many years by The Fashion, and most recently, Apple Tax Services) in early January and are in the process of making the necessary renovations.

I started dreaming of owning a place like this in the late 90’s when as a young family we lived in Lancaster, Ohio and frequented The Four Reasons. It’s the kind of place you can pop in for a quick cup of coffee, gather for lunch with friends, or spend a lazy weekend morning. The espresso drinks were always great and they had an amazing selection of cookies which my boys loved to choose from. It always felt like home – I loved that feeling!

When we moved home to Jackson sixteen years ago (when I left in 1986, I said I’d never do that – but that’s another story), the thought of a coffee house crossed my mind. Jackson didn’t have a coffee house, but could it support one, could I really do this? With no money in savings and three young boys at home, it was really just a dream.

Fast forward to 2016 – two boys in college and one starting high school. Things changed, I changed.  Honestly, feeling as if there was “nothing” here, I was ready to leave Jackson. My marketing/design business was booming – but I could work from anywhere.

My middle son, Cole, was invited in May of that year to speak at a fundraiser for the iBelieve Foundation. iBelieve sponsored him to attend the Ohio Association of Student Councils summer leadership workshops for several years in high school and he later staffed those same workshops. As a freshman at Syracuse University, Cole was invited to be a panelist and share his experiences with potential donors. This was pretty exciting, and we all went to support him. Receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award that night was Dr. James Mahoney, Executive Director, Batelle for Kids. Dr. Mahoney spoke for a bit after receiving his award. I don’t remember everything he said, but I do remember this powerful quote – “The grass isn’t always greener on the other side. The grass is greener where you water it.”

That quote was new to me and it really hit home! I thought about it quietly the rest of the weekend. I had been spending the past decade wishing for something more, something different, somewhere different – but what had I done to “water the grass,” so to speak?

A local coffee house might seem like a small thing to most people, but walk down the street in Jackson, Ohio and you’ll realize this is big for a lot of people. Everytime I receive a “thumbs up” or huge smile when I share what I am doing, it makes all the “water bills” and “weeds” worthwhile.