After realizing Colorado’s stay-at-home order was negatively affecting her coffeehouse more than she expected, Gathering Grounds owner Ashli Campbell decided that instead of relying on takeout orders, she would convert her business into a buying club for essential groceries.
The club has two ordering deadlines: For Wednesday pickups, orders must be placed by noon Monday. For Friday pickups, orders must be placed by noon Wednesday. Pickup time frames for both days are between 4 and 7:15 p.m.
Orders must be placed online at bunnyandclydessalida.com. The reason the web address is different from Gathering Grounds is because Campbell was previously considering a name change before COVID-19 began spreading in the community. Since the website was already set up, she thought they would just use it for now with future plans to officially change the name.
Customers should pick up their orders outside Gathering Grounds, 203 W. First St. All pickups will be curbside with people encouraged to stay inside their cars and follow social distancing mandates. Boxes are labeled with names.
Last names starting with A through I should pick up their orders between 4 and 4:45 p.m., last names starting with J through Q should pick up their orders between 4:46 and 6:30 p.m., and last names starting with R through Z should pick up their orders between 6:30 and 7:15 p.m.
Campbell said while these time frames are meant to stay the same in upcoming weeks, she may alter them based on customer feedback.
The products will vary weekly based on Shamrock Foods Distribution’s supply. If an item is out of stock, the buying club will attempt to find an appropriate substitute, although customers can request a refund if they so choose.
Products are priced “just above wholesale prices.” There is also a $5 processing fee for boxing and labor.
Site visitors have the option of helping people in need by selecting the “$10 Good Juju Food Donation Option,” whose funds will be put toward a community food bank. If a donor has a specific person in mind they would like to see food go to, they should leave the recipient’s name and information in the comment box of their order.
Campbell said they have not yet established a delivery service, but they may consider it in the future based on feedback.
Gathering Grounds is not open for regular business hours for the time being, but they hope to return once regulations are eased.
The idea was conceived about two weeks ago. Campbell said her employee Lauren Thomson had developed the website within the time span of three days and has been maintaining it since.
Because Wednesday was their first official pickup day, Campbell is asking for customer patience as they adapt their business model. She estimates they received about 50 orders for their first pickup day.