Overflow Tumblers Now on Website!

Overflow Tumblers
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Our tumblers are stainless steel with a thumb-slide lid. Their foam-insulated double wall construction will keep your drink hot or cold. They have a 14 oz. capacity, perfect for the morning cup on the go.  Purchase at http://www.overflowcoffeebar.org/shop.html

Latest Update

We are currently working hard on getting our lease signed at 1550 S. State.  It shouldn't be much longer until we have all the details worked out.  If you're wondering why it's taking so long, just imagine having a landlord who's a school board.  We really excited about the collaboration we'll have with the school but there are other items to deal with, like making sure the entire school board is on the same page regarding the details of our agreement with them.

We are also currently working on an application for a loan from the SBA.  As you can imagine, this is lots and lots of paperwork.  I've been meeting with my business banker and a mentor from SCORE Chicago (a volunteer counseling program of the SBA).  They have proved very helpful in this process but there is still much to be done.

This Wednesday, we have another appointment with a cabinet and counter maker.  Cabinets and counters are the most important furniture in our space and will define Overflow's space and show who we are.  If the cabinets and counters are clean, well-constructed and fit our branding, Overflow's credibility will increase.  Plus the cabinets and counters will hold our equipment so its durability is important for keeping our equipment safe.  The maker is giving us a great deal.  He's a local guy and this business has been in his family for 3 generations.  The estimate for the cabinets and counters is $10,770. 

Over the weekend, we received $105 toward the purchase of the cabinets and counters!  We're trying to get as much money together as possible because we'll most likely have to purchase the cabinets and counters prior to getting approved for the SBA loan.  We're asking people to consider giving $15 toward the purchase of the cabinets and counters so that we can get moving quickly and open the doors of Overflow as soon as possible.  A purchase from our website also helps us get closer to opening the shop.  Please visit www.overflowcoffeebar.org and make your gift or purchase an item.

Overflow T-Shirts

have now been posted on our website.  Purchase yours today with limited time only FREE shipping!  More information at http://www.overflowcoffeebar.org/shop.html

Christians and Coffee

So, I'm hanging out at Caribou today working on a teaching for our first Sunday gathering of "Vineyard South Loop" this Sunday.  I'm surprised... there are at least 2, 1on1 Bible studies going on here.  This got me to thinking... are "Christians" the biggest consumers of coffee???

Then, I'm reminded of part of Brandon's story.  Here's a copy of what he's written before... just for your thoughts.  ;)

When I first came to the Vineyard, I remember coming to church not knowing what to expect.  Much to my surprise, I was asked that day by the pastor if we could meet over coffee. Later that week, we met at Caribou Coffee [a different one than the one I'm at now], the typical hangout place nearby my house.   I remember thinking, “This pastor has a cool job.  He gets paid to have coffee and hang out with me.”  Over the course of the next few years, we met over coffee at Starbucks (a.k.a. St. Arbucks) or Caribou and I came to realize that his job was much more than just having coffee with me. 

As I looked around these coffee shops, I saw Bible studies happen all the time and also people building community. It was during these time of connecting with my pastor and later studying for VLI [Vineyard Leadership Institute] while sipping coffee that I realized God’s call for me to church plant. 

Fast forward a couple years later and you can find me as part of a team planting in the city.  We would try and get people to come to church but would not have much success but I saw that the coffee shops were always full. I started investigating and learned… 

Coffee shops are known as third places in their communities.  The third place used to be the church.  I began to think, “Why it is so much easier to get people (co-workers, neighbors, friends) to go to coffee with me than to get them to go to church?” Then, I began to think of all the money, we as leaders in the church spend on coffee.  Drinking it at church or drinking it out as we meet with people.  I thought, “What would it look like if we owned the coffee shop?  If it wasn’t a ‘religious place’ but a place everyone felt comfortable in and a place where ‘spiritual conversations’ could happen?” 

 That’s when I took God’s whispers and began to dig deeper.  As I researched I discovered the injustices that take place in the coffee industry - from the farmer to the barista.  If I was real about my faith, I had to do something.  I couldn’t release spiritual captives over coffee while enslaving the people who grew my coffee beans or knowing my favorite barista is receiving very little pay.  This was the collision.  Could I fight spiritual battles for individual souls and seek justice for those impacted by the coffee industry at the same time?  Was I even allowed to do both?

Bash on Wabash in Review

We had a great time having a booth at the Bash on Wabash this year.  While we didn't make any money, we did have fun, get over 200 people signed up for our drawing (and onto our email list) and sell some coffee.  Overall, we loved getting to know people in the neighborhood and hearing their excitement about having a neighborhood coffee shop.  We think we'll have plenty of customers once we open.

If you missed the Bash, check out this video:  http://www.chicago3media.com/videoview.html?videoviewid=483.  We made it in the video!

We also have lots of leftover t-shirts and new tumblers that we'll be posting on our website.  Check back soon!

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