New business designed to help new businesses

John Hagermann (left), manager of The Hub Cafe, and Nathan McKie in The Hub Cafe on Main Street in Ironton.  The business’ grand opening is tomorrow.

The Hub Cafe in Ironton is a cafe/gathering place on the surface, but its founders have a larger purpose.

“I actually moved here with the intent to try to do something to revitalize the rural economy that needed a shot in the arm,” said Nathan McKie. “In my research I came across a coffee shop kind of thing  where people could gather and it helped draw people together. That is why we have a cafe here. This is more focused on being a training center. We are doing food service because everyone complains about the quality of service you receive in restaurants. It isn’t the employees’ fault, but they aren’t up to the level they need to be.”

McKie has teamed up with The Hub Cafe Manager John Hagermann to train local workers placed by Job Corps in basic work skills and ethics.

With the help of a grant from ICEP, McKie purchased the former Wilson Auto Body Shop at 106 North Main Street and transformed a part of it into The Hub Cafe.  It is the first project of a McKie founded organization called R.E.A.C.T. Arcadia Valley (Recruiting Entrepreneurs to Assist Communities to Thrive), a Christian-based initiative dedicated to revitalizing struggling communities, according to the organization’s Facebook page.

In fact, there are undeveloped portions of the building (called “The Showroom”), and plans for it include a community meeting room and possible places for other business startups.

A grand opening for the business is planned for tomorrow (Thursday, November 15) beginning at 10 a.m..

Proceeds from the cafe will be used to support entrepreneurial endeavors and new housing starts, McKie said.

“We hope this can be the engine that fuels the creation of community as well as expansion in entrepreneur-type things like a business incubator,” he said.