Making Friends in Vershire with Coffee and Beer
April 05, 2023
Justin Willeau was eager to find ways to meet people and contribute to the community when he moved to Vershire in 2020. He attended town meetings, volunteered, and helped his neighbors with odd jobs like baling hay.
Vershire, named after the first syllable of Vermont and the last syllable of New Hampshire, is a hard-to-get-to town in Orange County that’s home to about 670 residents. Since Vershire doesn’t have a coffee house or a bar, Willeau created weekly get-togethers revolving around coffee and beer.
-The Church Orr House on Route 113 is where weekly coffee and beer events are held.
“This is the first time I’ve lived somewhere long enough where I could be part of the community, and I think it’s something I’ve always wanted,” says Willeau, who was raised in the Midwest and has served in the Navy for 16 years. “To be a staple somewhere is a cool feeling for a nomadic person like myself.”
He started a Coffee Bar on Saturday mornings and a Beer Exchange on Thursday nights at the Church Orr House on Route 113. On Saturday mornings, the Church Orr House—owned by a local organization called Ver-Share—is also where people can visit the community children’s library or shop for local crafts and handmade goods in the Made-in-Vershire store.
You can visit the Coffee Bar, library and Made In Vershire shop on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Beer Exchange is held Thursdays from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. For more information, visit vershare.org.
Happy Vermont Podcast
-Justin Willeau pours steamed milk in a coffee at the Church Orr House in Vershire.
In this episode of Happy Vermont, Willeau talks about serving in the Navy, getting involved in the community, and finding a place like Vershire to call home.