Customers buy meals for front line workers

There’s nothing like a crisis to spark some creativity. Drip Cafe owner Greg Vogeley found one innovative way to support both his small business and other employees working during the pandemic.

“We’ve always been a community and a gathering place, and this isn’t the time to stop that,” Vogeley said. After recently launching an online portal to sell takeout to customers at home, he realized he could use it to activate his community and do some good.

After a phone call from community member Steve Lewis, the movement rolled out. Lewis bought 250 meals from Drip Cafe for health care workers, and once others heard about it, they wanted to help, too.

Vogeley added a “donate” option to his online menu and began fundraising to provide box lunches to essential workers.

From online donations and contributions from companies like Delaware Orthopaedics Specialists, Drip Cafe will have delivered 2,000 meals.

“That’s an amazing act of the community to come together and not only support a local restaurant but also the people who serve our community,” Vogeley said.

He delivered to Delaware State Police Troop 6 April 20. “Troop 6 thanks Drip Café and those wonderful and generous customers and citizens who have made donations to provide food not only to Troop 6, but to numerous other law enforcement agencies, Fire, EMS, and medical personnel,” Capt. Jennifer Griffin posted on the social media site Nextdoor.com.

To donate, visit dripcafede.com and go to the online shop. The Hockessin cafe is open for takeout every day from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. There is a limited menu, including family style options.

Vogeley hopes to introduce other ways to connect with the community, including an online artists’ corner where he plans to feature some artwork that hangs in normally busy cafes, breweries or restaurants.