Tuesday, October 2, 2018

The Village Cafe to Open in the Union Market District, October 9

The Village Cafe owners Kevon King, Ryan Williams and Mahammad Mangum (r) (Photo: The Village Cafe)

From our friends at The Village Cafe...

Trio of DC Natives Bring The Village Cafe to Life in Union Market District

Childhood friends-turned-business partners take their ethos of access to quality food to the iconic Market

The Union Market District continues its commitment to nurturing burgeoning local businesses with the arrival of The Village Cafe (1272 5th Street, NE), slated for a soft opening on October 9, followed by a grand opening on October 23.

When founders and Washington natives Kevon King, Mahammad Mangum and Ryan Williams met as kids, they bonded at Woodrow Wilson High School, where they pursued their passions in the business, creative and culinary fields, respectively.

Recognizing that caf├ęs are the ultimate social gathering place, the trio embarked upon opening their own establishment that would not only bring quality food and drink to underserved communities, but that would also uplift the “village” that make those communities tick.

“Throughout history, coffee has been a commodity that people have clamored for because it brings them together, and fosters both conversation and community,” King says. “We have people’s days in the palm of our hands by potentially giving them a great day over a great cup of coffee.”

“The Union Market District has always been about supporting entrepreneurs and creating economic opportunity for local emerging businesses,” says Jodie McLean, CEO of EDENS. “They are a great addition to the community and we are proud to have them here.”

“It is with a great sense of pride that I welcome The Village Cafe to Ward 5 and the Union Market area, which continues to grow more vibrant every day,” says DC city councilmember Kenyan McDuffie. “Small businesses are the backbone of our local economy, employing District residents and keeping dollars circulating within our communities. I congratulate my fellow Wilson High School alums, Kevon, Mahammad and Ryan on their new venture and look forward to the many cups of coffee I will be enjoying at The Village Cafe for years to come.”

“One the reasons Wacif invested in Kevon, Mahammad, and Ryan is that we share their commitment to creating social and economic opportunity through entrepreneurship,” said Wacif Executive Director Harold Pettigrew. “We think the Village Cafe is going to be a commercial and community success, and we look forward to celebrating their accomplishments.”

King, Mangum and Williams envision The Village Cafe as more than just a business. The Cafe will create social and economic opportunities through food, entrepreneurship and creative innovation with local entrepreneurs, artists, makers and businesses, including Southeastern Roastery, The Village Cafe’s official coffee partner. In addition to the local roast, The Village Cafe will also serve sandwiches, pastries and eventually, handcrafted cocktails, wine and beer.

In keeping with the spirit of uplifting their “village” and developing a new one with partners near and within Union Market, the founders’ plans for future programming at the Cafe include:

• Sign language classes with Gallaudet University

• “Village Talks,” including healthy eating panel discussions

• Children’s story time with Politics and Prose

• Career skills workshops + “coffee culture” training

• Partner highlight podcast

• Wilson High School alumni panel

The Village Cafe will be open Sunday and Monday, 8 AM - 6 PM and Tuesday-Saturday, 8 AM - 8 PM.

About The Village Cafe:
The Village Cafe is located in the heart of the Union Market District. We provide locally sourced food and drinks from underserved, aspiring and budding entrepreneurs, serving as a platform for those business owners to showcase their talents and connect with other communities. We believe that entrepreneurship, access to quality food, and strong community spaces are critical ingredients to a healthy, prosperous place. By sourcing from local businesses, entrepreneurs and creatives, we share their stories in alignment with our own and create opportunities for our communities, from our communities. Visit us at www.thevillageCafedc.com.

About Southeastern Roastery:
Southeastern Roastery, the coffee brand of Southeastern Roast and Brewery, started in 2016 with roots in Isle of Wight, Virginia and Washington, DC. Beautifully southern, it is committed to promoting the cultural exchange, open dialogue, and collective creativity that coffee communion has historically and internationally nurtured. Southeastern Roastery unabashedly continues in this warm tradition by offering fresh, high quality, specialty coffees and sharing inspiring roasts in love.

About the Union Market District:
The Union Market District is a place where businesses of all size launch, scale and innovate; a place for creative minds and businesses to connect, thrive and make DC their own. Located a short walk from the NoMa/Gallaudet metro, is a 45-acre historic urban development where, at its core, sits the acclaimed food market, Union Market. Since opening in September 2012, Union Market now averages 15,000 visitors per weekend and has hosted more than 400 retail pop-ups and events. For more information about the Union Market District, please visit www.unionmarketdc.com or follow @UnionMarketDC on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.