By Charles Cooper
Hello everyone, hope you’re having a good week. This week’s column should be of special interest to all of you who, like me, are dedicated coffee drinkers. This past Monday was National Coffee day and as usual last week was not my week for Reflections so this week I decided to interview April Pullen whose business, Main Attraction, has been on Main Street the last five years.
Having worked for Standard Coffee Company many years ago, it was especially interesting to see how the coffee business has progressed over the years. I was completely overwhelmed at all of the varieties of coffees that are offered today. Most people know of Columbian Coffee but this was the first time I heard of Guatemala roast, which April says is very popular among her customers.
As many of you may already know, iced coffee is also a hit among customers. Our British ancestors were largely tea drinkers but coffee has been a big part of our culture since the French first introduced it. In France, they drank a beverage made from a root called Chicory, which is a cousin to a radish. The Acadians started blending Chicory with their coffee. When the Acadians were exiled from Nova Scotia to South Louisiana, they introduced this coffee and the popularity grew. This is still in practice today. People make the mistake of saying all Louisiana coffee is mixed with chicory, which is in error. The favorite Louisiana coffee today is a dark roast pure coffee.
April and I had an in-depth conversation about all the different kinds of coffee. It was a pleasure talking to April, as she has a vast knowledge of all the coffees and blends that are on the market today. In fact, she can rival all the blends available at a Starbucks. The difference between her business and other chain businesses is, of course, the personal touch and friendly familiar smile you receive when you walk in the door of Main Attraction.
April, who graduated from Ole Miss, is a former dancer and teacher. During this interview, I can see why she was so successful within her dance group, which traveled extensively through Europe and appeared in two Super Bowls. She has a sparkling personality and an intense work ethic. In addition to owning and operating Main Attraction, she also currently owns and operates Valley Dance Company where her love for children is expressed through her work with them. Main Attraction is not just a coffee shop, it is also a tanning salon and sandwich shop. The tanning business has over 250 customers.
Through the many hats she wears, April Pullen provides many services to our small town while maintaining a family which includes a husband and three boys. Her success in her business and family life can be attributed to her desire to give 100 percent in anything she does.
I left with a standing invitation to come in and try the various blends of coffee as well as, in her words, “an incredible cinnamon roll.” Water Valley is indeed lucky to have April on Main Street. For those of you who have never visited Main Attraction, I urge you to do so. You will be surrounded by a comfortable atmosphere, friendly service and a variety of options including incredible blends of coffee and delicious food.
As most of you know, I am by nature an optimist. I feel like having someone like April Pullen on Main Street in Water Valley, is proof that our future is definitely growing in good hands. Please let me hear from you, as your comments are always appreciated and used whenever possible. My email address is email@example.com or write me in care of the Herald. Have a great week.