No More Empty Cups is a small coffee shop just south of downtown, located on 10th Street in historic Little Italy, Omaha. The coffee shop—which is celebrating their two year anniversary this month—is part of No More Empty Pots, which is a food security non-profit based out of North Omaha.
They work with local growers and students, teaching them how to grow and cook, in an effort to help decrease food deserts in North Omaha and hopefully grow to encompass the whole entire Omaha area.
John Jelinek is the marketing manager of No More Empty Pots and also frequents the coffee shop for a good cup of joe.
“Ah, so No More Empty Cups supports that mission of No More Empty Pots. So any money that we make goes towards supporting the mission of No More Empty Pots,” said Jelinek.
No More Empty Pots has a strong community outreach providing training in commercial kitchens for people interested in entering the food industry. No More Empty Cups is another way for the mission of No More Empty Pots to be introduced to Omaha.
“And we have a community space here for people to use to maybe learn more about cooking and participating in events that we have,” said Jelinek.
They have a walking club as well as a book club that meets at the shop. They also have a local foods meet up where people get to learn more about farm-to-table and sample items made in the area or by Nebraska producers.
“But it’s also a way to learn about, you know, really what our mission is,” said Jelinek. “Just being part of the community, we have a lot of regulars who come in. It’s also neat that all of our employees, all of our baristas, myself—we live in the neighborhood. So, you get to know people who are walking around, you see them in the shop and it’s a good way to just be apart of the community.”
“We’re working with three providers. One is Archetype Coffee, which is the best coffee in Omaha. They provide our coffee for us. Our teas mostly come from The Tea Smith, which is a local organization. And then we’re working with a local urban farm called Benson Bounty and we’re going to be having some of their items for sale. They do a lot of herbal teas, syrups, that type of thing. And then we’re also working to grow the foods that we provide will be made by local producers,” said Jelinek.
No More Empty Cups is more than just a coffee shop. It’s a welcoming and inclusive community engagement space. It’s a place where coffee, culture and community join together.