Neutral Grounds, located off of 6th and Main streets, is a relatively new business to Seward. Photo courtesy of the Neutral Grounds Facebook page.
by Hayden Rensner
Neutral Grounds, a coffee shop in Seward, will be celebrating its one-year anniversary on Friday, Feb. 1.
Neutral Grounds is known by Concordia students and Seward residents for more than just its coffee. The shop is also known for the game nights, open-mic nights, worship nights and other events it hosts in order to foster community. The business is owned by A non-profit organization called Bread Of Life Ministries own the business, and it is co-managed by Concordia alumna Ashley Geidel and Seward local Eva Sander.
Geidel talked about the evolution of Neutral Grounds and how the business has changed during its first year.
“We went into it wanting to have a focus on college ministry and community,” Geidel said.
As the staff members, many of them Concordia students and alumni, came together and prepared to open Neutral Grounds, there were a lot of visions going through everyone’s minds. Geidel said that in the end, God brought the business together in just the right way.
“None of us knew what we were doing when we got into this, and none of us really felt qualified to open a business, but it was very evident that the Lord was behind it because of all the different people that He placed in our path at just the right time to make this happen,” Geidel said.
Neutral Grounds strives to provide rest to the Seward community through coffee, conversations and different ministries.
“There are a lot of community needs, and we are always trying to figure out which ones to focus on,” Geidel said.
Since it opened, the staff of Neutral Grounds has focused on reaching out to people and making them feel welcome.
“The name of Neutral Grounds was definitely intentional, of a common place where people could come….a comfortable environment for any type of person,” Geidel said.
Community is a big part of what Neutral Grounds is, not just community among the customers, but also community among the staff. Senior David Schrampfer, an employee at Neutral Grounds, enjoys the intentional environment that the business provides.
“There has never been a day when I have not wanted to go to work,” Schrampfer said.
Neutral Grounds will be hosting a “Birthday Bash” this coming Friday, Feb. 1 at 7 p.m. The event will be open to the public. It will include free espresso, chips and salsa, and live music. All are welcome to come help Neutral Grounds celebrate.