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Art & Soul: The Culinary Arts - Creating "A Third Place" With Community Culinary Connections

Sep 5, 2019

Sweetwaters Coffee and Tea in Ann Arbor
Credit Kristen Jackson / Sweetwaters

This week, "Art and Soul" focuses on the culinary arts in Washtenaw County.  WEMU's Lisa Barry and Jessica Webster talk to Kristen Jackson, the owner of two Ann Arbor Sweetwaters Coffee and Tea locations.  She talks about her efforts to connect customers with locally made food and baked goods to keep community connections strong by creating a comfortable "third place" for people to visit and enjoy.


Kristen Jackson, owner of the Sweetwaters on Ann Arbor-Saline Road and Plymouth Road in Ann Arbor
Credit Lisa Barry / 89.1 WEMU

It seems that everyone has three "places" in their lives--the first being home, the second is work, and the third is a place where one can feel safe and comfortable and just unwind.

Sweetwaters franchisee Kristen Jackson envisioned "third places" when she opened two new locations in Ann Arbor.  The first location is found near the intersection of Plymouth and Green Road, which was closed from some time.  Now, it's fully reopened with seating that could be used for relaxation or arranging business meetings. 

The second and newer location is inside the Meijer store on Ann Arbor-Saline Road.  It's designed to give shoppers a needed break from buying groceries or as just a good pit stop before or after a day at work.

Besides great coffee, the Ann Arbor Sweetwaters offers pastries, sandwiches, and (coming soon) bubble tea.  You can also have food catered and carryout orders delivered personally by Kristen.

Sweetwaters Coffee and Tea in Ann Arbor
Credit Kristen Jackson / Sweetwaters

To keep tabs on any upcoming events at Sweetwaters, check out the Facebook pages for the Plymouth-Green location and for the Meijer location.  You can also read the story behind Sweetwaters printed in the Ann Arbor Observer here.

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— Lisa Barry is the host of All Things Considered on WEMU. You can contact Lisa at 734.487.3363, on Twitter @LisaWEMU, or email her at lbarryma@emich.edu