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Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Looking Meadow Hopes to Rebound From Coffee-Truck Carnage

Posted By on Wed, Sep 29, 2021 at 10:00 AM

click to enlarge Coffee-truck catastrophes put a dent in Looking Meadow's plans. - JAMIE HERMAN
  • Coffee-truck catastrophes put a dent in Looking Meadow's plans.

At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Jamie Herman bought her first vintage camper and started making it her dream coffee truck. By October 2020, renovations were done and she was taking the camper to farmers' markets and private events, operating as Looking Meadow.

Herman hoped to use the truck as a stepping stone to her own brick-and-mortar coffee shop, but that plan ran into trouble this summer.

After a long day of baking and taking part in two events in July, Herman took an unlucky turn into a parking garage and totaled Looking Meadow’s coffee truck. Insurance helped pay for the damage, but Herman says it isn’t easy to find a vintage camper ready to operate as a coffee shop on wheels.

She thought she was ready to move past her stoke of bad luck might when she found a camper in Kansas City that had everything she needed and fit the aesthetic of Looking Meadow. Herman bought her replacement earlier this month and made plans to have it insured.

“We had just given the owners a cashier's check the day before,” Herman says. “We had went to try to insure the camper and the insurance broker said we wouldn’t be able to until Tuesday, and we thought, 'OK, surely, we’ll be OK for one day.'

Sunday night, September 5, Herman arrived home with the camper, looking forward to the future of Looking Meadow. Instead, her hopes came crashing down the next morning when someone plowed into what was to be her new coffee truck. She says Looking Meadow would have been up and rolling again within weeks once everything was sorted out with the DMV and health department, but now she doesn't know when they'll be back.

click to enlarge Looking Meadow's replacement camper never had a chance. - JAMIE HERMAN
  • Looking Meadow's replacement camper never had a chance.
She doesn't have the money to buy a third coffee truck in a two-year span. Emily Ahmad, Jamie Herman’s close family friend, created a GoFundMe with the hope of offsetting the cost. The first time Herman’s truck was totaled, Ahmad offered to set up a GoFundMe, but Herman declined.

“She’s definitely a personality type that does not like to ask for help so she didn’t want any help or attention,” Ahmad says. “But after the second collision she was like ‘OK, now I’m ready to have some help.’”

The GoFundMe had gained $2,540 from 60 donors as of Wednesday morning.

Herman doesn't know if she will be able to find another camper that could function for her business and is thinking of getting off the road. Instead, she hopes to use the donations to open a standing coffee shop for Looking Meadow.
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