Hi! My name is Kristin Evans and I am the owner of Great Mornings Coffee & Tea.
In 2015, I started Great Mornings in Hawaii while my husband was stationed at Schofield Barracks. Like many military spouses, I learned that finding employment is hard when your time is short and your resume has many gaps in it. Great Mornings Coffee & Tea was a way to contribute to my household and to maintain a sense of identity outside of my husband.
During our time in Hawaii, Great Mornings grew from an online shop to a mobile coffee & tea bar. Having the ability to serve people in person was fulfilling in a way that I didn’t expect and didn’t realize I would miss so much until it was gone.
At the end of 2017, my husband ended his military career in order to be near family and we relocated back to Georgia. Unfortunately, my dreams for Great Mornings were put on hold while we learned to navigate the civilian world as a family.
What is the status of Great Mornings Coffee & Tea Now? What is the next move?
January 1, 2019, Great Mornings Coffee & Tea relaunched online with the assistance of a Kiva loan. We focus on coffee and tea specialty items including mugs and flavor-infused sweeteners. Great Mornings tries to provide a one-stop-shop for coffee and tea lovers while also supporting other women-owned and small businesses.
At the end of March, I was let go from my full-time job as a marketing support specialist for a restaurant supply company due to COVID. With the blessing and support of my husband, I have decided to focus full time on Great Mornings and want to bring it to a physical location.
In the last 9 months, our sales have increased by 500%+ compared to last year. Our local sales have also seen an increase in the last 4 months. I believe that with a physical location, we can increase our retail sales as well as getting back into coffee/tea bar services.
Why so much? Why crowdfunding?
I have found a location that I would love for Great Mornings but need assistance with the first few months of rent as well as some of the buildout for the space. The space is also large enough that I can add a small coffee cart to the shop but that would also require the proper equipment and permits.
The money would be used to assist with rent and the buildout of the space and coffee cart.
I decided to go with crowdfunding because approval ratings for small businesses are low and the numbers decrease for women of color. Almost 2 years ago, I pursued a crowdfunded loan that helped me relaunch my business. It is with the support of friends, family, and strangers that I was able to rebuild something that I thought I lost. Great Mornings is ready for the next step and I am hoping to experience that same support again.
Great Mornings is more than just a coffee and tea shop for me. It is the opportunity to be apart of a community and to create a space that people will feel welcome in. I want all great mornings to start here.
Thank you so much for even considering a contribution to my fund. Five years ago, I never would have imagined I would be here. Today, I am truly touched by the love and support I have received as a business owner. I hope to return that to every customer that visits Great Mornings.
What if you don't raise all of the money?
I am considering all possibilities. If I am not able to reach the full amount of my goal, I will pursue coffee catering services and even a smaller retail location to lease.
Will the discount be good for the coffee shop?
If I am able to open a location within the year, then of course!