Mockingbird Cafe patrons hold fundraiser

By Krystal Allan - bio | email

BAY ST. LOUIS, MS (WLOX) - John Rosetti speaks for many Mockingbird Cafe patrons in Bay St. Louis when he says, "The Mockingbird's not going anywhere."

Thursday night, Rosetti and others who love the Old Town business took part in a fundraiser to save their cafe from closing its doors.

"The Mockingbird is the anchor right now of downtown. We can't let this leave Bay St. Louis," Rosetti said.

Fellow patron Hannah Fitzpatrick agrees.

"That'd be terrible, because their coffee's awesome and I love the people who own it."

Alicein Chambers, co-owner of the cafe, grew up in Bay St. Louis. She said the cafe fulfilled a need for the city after Hurricane Katrina.

"There was nothing here, and we just all longed for a place we could share our stories and be there for one another. It's what we needed, so that's what we tried to create," Chambers said.

But with the downturn in the economy, it's getting harder to keep the community cafe open.

"We're trying to make the necessary cuts - the hours, the menu and staff wise," Chambers said.

Despite the tough times, Chambers said there's one message everyone needs to hear if they want to keep businesses in their downtown areas.

"If you're a small town and your main streets are important to you, then you need to support them or they will not make it," Chambers said.

It's a message supporters of the Mockingbird, like John Rosetti, already seem to get.

"We're all close knit. We're going to make the Mockingbird stay."

The Mockingbird Cafe is located in Old Town Bay St. Louis near the Methodist Church at 110 South Second Street.