COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Third Way Cafe is a new coffee and bookshop in the Hilltop area that aims to bring the community together.
“For us, a big part of it was creating a safe space,” store owner John Rush.
You pay two dollars a day for bottomless coffee, five dollars for a book, and can begin an endless conversation with people in your community.
Rush wants to bring people in the Hilltop community together to talk about their future and life-long resident William Huffman says it’s needed.
“This is a breath of fresh air to come back to the Hilltop is to have a personal coffee shop for everyone to be able to come to,” said Huffman.
Huffman has been in the Hilltop for 68 years and knows firsthand how much it’s changed since his childhood.
“When fights broke out in school it was fistfights,” said Huffman. “It wasn’t pulling knives, pulling guns on kids. The whole system has changed from what it was. The Hilltop has struggled and it’s now trying to make itself to come back.”
This cafe host several events from poetry night, to open forum discussion on issues in the Hilltop.
Rush wants members of the community to be a part of this comeback, and he hopes it happens once conversation at a time.
“Our goal here at a very small level is to be a seed that’s planted so that we can see a neighborhood transformation and change on the west side that’s unique and different than what we’ve seen before,” said Rush. “I might be an idealist and utopian, I don’t know but that’s the vision.”
In addition to hosting multiple events a week, they also hire people battling addiction and ex-convicts to give them a second chance at life.