Main Street Kansas: Coffee and communication brings the community closer in Hays

Main Street Kansas

One local coffee shop in Hays is doing more than just selling coffee.

Instead, they’re reaching out to local communities to create connections that are found beyond their coffee cups.

Whether it’s the smell, sight or taste of coffee, owner Patrick McGinnis said there’s something special always found in a coffee shop.

“I like coffee, but mostly I love to see this is a place that actually is a symbol for good communication,” he said.

McGinnis said he opened up Breath Coffee in Hays after he realized our society’s lack of quality communication.

“I was challenged by what I see in our community and our nation where we don’t communicate very well,” he said.

So with the help of volunteers and local businesses donating food, he began free community meals within his own coffee shop and beyond.

“We have community meals at the coffee shop twice a month,” McGinnis said. “Community meals is an opportunity to say hey we can make it simple as just getting together twice a month.”

But he said he wanted to serve others beyond the walls of his own coffee shop.

Twice a month, he and his team, load up a truck with food in hopes to travel to communities they might not encounter on a daily basis.

“So, we found other spots where there may be language barriers or other cultural barriers where people would be getting together,” McGinnis said. “We go to where they are and set up a shop where we can provide food.”

Regardless of someone’s background, he said by adding a table, a few chairs and some people, conversation and community can be built anywhere.

“I like how they give the food out to everyone that is really hungry or like going through problems or whatever,” resident Chris Phillips said. “It’s a blessing to have good conversation,”

Connections that are created beyond the walls of any coffee shop.

“I don’t think anybody will turn down a smiling face and a conversation,” McGinnis said. “And most people won’t turn down meals either.”

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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