POTTSTOWN PA – A newly opened “zero waste” coffee shop in downtown Pottstown is where local residents are being invited to a free workshop, scheduled for Monday (May 8, 2023) from 1:30-3:30 p.m., that enables them to tap into their personal creativity and entrepreneurial spirit.
The “Makerspace Workshop,” open to the public, will be held in the makerspace located at the Espresso Yourself Book Café, 249 E. High St. Participants will learn how to use a variety of creative devices that include a Cricut-brand machine, button maker, heat press, and three-dimensional printer. New makers can produce customized stickers, tote bags, mugs, and badges to sell or keep.
Leading the event is Dr. Hoda Ehsan (at top), engineering department chair at The Hill School, who hopes the workshop sparks participants’ dreams of launching their own businesses to supplement their incomes.
Advance registration for the workshop is required, and is available online.
Take a look at Espresso Yourself
The Espresso Yourself Book Café is, itself, the result of entrepreneurial thinking.
It officially opened April 15 (Saturday) with a ribbon-cutting conducted by the TriCounty Chamber of Commerce. It started far earlier, though, as an inspiration of students in a Hill School entrepreneurship class taught by Twila Fisher, executive director of the Hobart’s Run community organization.
Their collective vision and efforts culminated in the shared storefront operation that features used books for browsing and borrowing, the sale of bulk products from shampoo to seeds, a variety of light foods, and shared community spaces. It’s not entirely staffed by students – being educated currently keeps them busy – but patrons likely will see them there from time to time.
Espresso Yourself is scheduled to be open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. It will be available for coffee and a snack while visitors are engaged at Monday’s free workshop.
Several sources provided funding for the project, “most notably a gift from an alumnus who co-founded the entrepreneurship class with Fisher in 2019, and continues to serve as a mentor to the students,” according to a media release.
Occupying its shared spaces
Ehsan, working with Hobart’s Run, was a driving force to establish the café makerspace (above). It’s anticipated to “facilitate creative and potentially income-producing ventures for Pottstown residents,” using the equipment for which she will offer instruction Monday.
Also maintaining offices inside the East High Street building are the STRIVE Initiative, and Be ReZilient: Healing Through the Arts. Both are local non-profit organizations serving Pottstown area populations.
STRIVE, with David Charles as executive director, provides mentorship opportunities for Pottstown youths. Be ReZilient, founded by Denise Williams, offers life coaching “infused with art and aromatherapy … to help manage behaviors, process feelings, reduce stress and anxiety, and increase self-esteem,” it said.
Photos provided by Hobart’s Run and the TriCounty Area Chamber