As you walk in the front door of the Green Mountain Coffee® Visitor Center & Café one of the first things you will notice is our quote of the day board. A recent quote reminded me of a triumph for our town of Waterbury, Vermont: “At any given moment you have the power to say this is not how the story is going to end.”
Almost one year ago Tropical Storm Irene shocked our town where our visitor center and café is located at the historic train station. This past year has been one of rebuilding and perseverance for our small, yet vital community. We were fortunate to only have the train station basement flooded, however that was a tough blow in itself and forced us to close for four months during renovations. Being an employee of Green Mountain Coffee for some years now I can attest first-hand our perseverance to become a leader and trailblazer in the specialty coffee industry today. For many of us that determination drove us to do what we do best, and serve a great cup of coffee.
Although our visitor center was closed, for sixty-five days following the storm our team served free coffee to the community from the local park, rain or shine. We were transformed in to listeners, sympathizers, and cheerleaders to our fellow community members who often came to us covered in dirt, wearing masks, and sporting mud boots. We were looked upon to provide the metaphorical cup of coffee sought to start the day that helps us rejuvenate, focus, and revitalize. It brought a sense of normalcy in what was a turned upside down community. Our triumph during this time was to see a glimpse of a smile under a mask, and even a hug from a regular customer whose home had been devastated.
I am pleased to let you know that driving through the town of Waterbury today is as beautiful as it was before. Progress continues due to the efforts of many community members and other volunteers. We are proud to be part of such a great community that came together and chose how our story was going to end.
Cheers to Waterbury!