Friday, July 01, 2011
I live in a part of the state that doesn't have a lot of big box stores or chain restaurants. Over the last two years we joined the ranks of the rest of the state with new commercial development that led to BJ's, Costco, Olive Garden, IHOP and Target. Before this we had to travel about 30 minutes either north or south to shop at one of these stores or eat at one of these restaurants. This did not bother me, as I hate shopping, and would rather cook 9 times out of 10 than go out.
However, when I read this article, it made me wish I had access to this specific Panera Bread (St. Louis Bread Company).
Basically, this store a community cafe and their business model is designed to help people in need. It works like this. You order your sandwich. You are told what the "suggested funding" is (regular price) and you can pay that price or you can pay whatever you want or can, less or more. All additional proceeds beyond overhead and expenses are donated. They offer vouchers for volunteers to work for an hour and recieve a free meal. It looks to be a vibrant community gathering space.
You can see a video of it below:
I hope they are able to implement this model in their stores around the country; maybe even in my corner of the state.
Enjoy and Happy Friday!