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Current Events & Hot Topics Current Events & Hot Topics

Topless coffee shop a hit in small Maine town

What do you think about this?

 

(CNN) -- It's a tough time for businesses, but one entrepreneur may have found the recipe for success.

Male and female servers go topless at Grand View Topless Coffee Shop.

Male and female servers go topless at Grand View Topless Coffee Shop.

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On Monday, Donald Crabtree opened Grand View Topless Coffee Shop in Vassalboro, Maine, where the waiters and waitresses serve their customers topless.

In a town with fewer than 4,500 residents, the topless coffee shop is booming with business. Paul Crabtree, the owner's brother, describes business so far as "fantastic."

"It's just been crowds mobbing in," he said.

Donald Crabtree faced initial opposition to his plan, but he won the right to go ahead in a planning board hearing last week. Many local residents were irate over the idea of combining coffee and nudity. Crabtree, however, saw a profitable business venture.

"I know what people want," he said. "People like nudity, and coffee is profitable. Sure, I'd start a coffee shop, but I'd be out of work in a week."

The flood of job applications -- more than 150 -- for Grand View Topless Coffee Shop reflected the rough job market.

Crabtree hired 10 women and five men under stringent requirements, including friendliness and, what he considered most important, that the wait staff "treat everyone equally." Watch townspeople, employees talk about coffee shop Video

"We didn't hire '10s,' " he said, referring to appearance. "We hired everyone from skinny to big-boned women."

Of the 15 selected, most had been laid off from other jobs in the past few months.

Elvis Thompson of Brunswick, for example, was a line cook at a restaurant before he lost his job. "They couldn't afford me anymore," he said.

He said he doesn't mind fielding interesting requests from customers.

"An 80-year-old woman told me she wanted to see me in spandex," Thompson said. "I just feel really lucky to have a job. I need the money so I can pay my rent."

Ginni Labree from Palermo, Maine, said she applied to several restaurants before being hired at the Grand View. All the restaurants declined to hire her because of her lack of experience.

"I'm so excited, so excited to have a job," she said.

The coffee shop jobs are paying off. One waitress received a $100 tip for a cup of coffee, and most of the wait staff make about $30 a table.

Although the topless coffee shop has been open less than a week, Crabtree said he is already seeing regulars. Customers include a variety of individuals, but mainly couples and females.

He also sees his new business venture as a temporary fix for customers struggling through tough economic times.

"The economy is so bad," Crabtree said, "Everyone's losing their homes, their ties, everything they own. People leave here happy and can't wait to come back. It's nice to see people smile again."

by on Feb. 28, 2009 at 9:00 PM
Replies (11-19):
forsythia_18
by on Mar. 1, 2009 at 11:51 AM

I'm all for the human body being viewed in a more comfortable way.  Usually, nakedness is shown with a serving of alcohol--keeping up with the "sinful or taboo" nature of it.  It's natural.  What's more normal than a cup of coffee??? I think it's a great idea.  Make the human body normal!  I'm not ashamed. 

Mommy2Jayson
by on Mar. 1, 2009 at 11:59 AM

Shit I'd do it if I had the body and wasn't so self consious... 100 dollar tip for a cup of coffee, you better believe I would be taking my shirt off...lol.

I AM A SINGLE 19 YEAR OLD MOMMY. I GO TO COLLEGE FULL TIME FOR CORRECTIONS. I WORK FULL TIME AT THE DEPARTMENT OF JOB AND FAMILY SERVICES. I AM A SURVIVOR OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND RAPE. I CO-SLEPT, VACCINANTED, DISPOSABLE DIPAERED AND FORMULA FED MY BEAUTIFUL ONE YEAR OLD SON JAYSON. HE IS HAPPY, HEALTHY AND WELL ADJUSTED TO HIS PERFECT LIFE. HE DOESN'T HAVE TWO PARENTS BUT HE HAS A MOMMY, 2 GRANDPARENTS, 3 AUNTS, 3 UNCLES, 7 COUSINS AND A WHOLE LOTTA LOVE! LIFE IS GOOD FOR US. AND THAT IS WHAT REALLY MATTERS

forsythia_18
by on Mar. 1, 2009 at 12:01 PM


Quoting Mommy2Jayson:

Shit I'd do it if I had the body and wasn't so self consious... 100 dollar tip for a cup of coffee, you better believe I would be taking my shirt off...lol.


LOL. ME too!!  But I don't think the demand is very high for pregnant nakedness.  hahahaha

PestPatti
by on Mar. 1, 2009 at 1:44 PM

 

 I dont drink coffee, so I wouldnt be going there.      I wonder if they would hire a 40 something with freckled breasts....

Wyldbutterfly
by Bronze Member on Mar. 1, 2009 at 3:21 PM


Quoting pirate_wife:

100 dollar tip for a coffee? I would do this job for that kind of money. Honestly money is really rough right now, and if that is what it takes to pay the rent and feed and clothe my child, then i am all for it. Sex does sell, always will, and atleast they are not stripping or whoring themselves, they are just serving coffee.


I will have to agree to completely disagree with this. Your last comment that is.

They are in fact WHORING themselves. They may not actually be getting paid for the actual act of sex(penetration) but they are selling themselves all the same. That is WHORING. They are serving more than coffee. They are selling their bodies.

Wyldbutterfly
by Bronze Member on Mar. 1, 2009 at 3:25 PM

 

Quoting moneysaver6:

That's so sad.  So sad.  I'm sorry to hear tha the only way those people could get jobs was to take their clothes off. 

And tell me, if the economy is SO rough, how exactly are the townspeople managing $30-$100 + for a CUP OF COFFEE.  Oh that's right.  It's not for coffee.  It's for the strip show.

Amy

You are 100% correct in this. I'd rather go to Tim Hortons,pay two dollars and not have to look at a pair of breasts or a mans chest. No Thanks! I personally think this place should be closed.

IrishRocker
by Member on Mar. 1, 2009 at 3:46 PM

I agree. If i lost my job tomorrow, and that was the only place that would hire me, by golly, im gonna do it for my family. Besides, the pregnant figure is apparently the most alluring!

Quoting pirate_wife:

100 dollar tip for a coffee? I would do this job for that kind of money. Honestly money is really rough right now, and if that is what it takes to pay the rent and feed and clothe my child, then i am all for it. Sex does sell, always will, and atleast they are not stripping or whoring themselves, they are just serving coffee.

Although I must say, i certainly wouldnt get my coffee from a place like this, nor would it even be welcome in my area

mom23luvs
by New Member on Mar. 3, 2009 at 12:42 AM

$100 tip for a cup of coffee!!?? I don't care if the waitress/waiter  is nude or not I wouldn't tip that much,lol. But this guy is brilliant if he is raking it in and I think it's great that such a small town gave him the go-ahead.

LoveMyEmiRose
by New Member on Mar. 3, 2009 at 6:18 AM

Personally I wouldnt go to it not because I dont like coffee but because Im sure the waiter or waitress would probably be expecting a FAT TIP!  And I dont have that kinda money!  Starbucks is EXPENSIVE ENOUGH FOR ME!

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