We love Lucy’s. Twenty-five years of building community

Birmingham AL
Birmingham AL
Lucy Bonds, owner of Lucy’s Coffee and Tea

Lucy’s Coffee & Tea, one of Birmingham’s most beloved coffee shops is celebrating their 25th Anniversary today.

One of our fondest memories was seeing Lucy’s coffee cart in and around UAB 25 years ago.  That was something very different back then. In Birmingham, it was considered a little strange.  Folks really didn’t drink good coffee (stores like Starbucks were just taking off). But Lucy Bonds, Lucy’s namesake persisted. Her cart became a mainstay for folks in and around UAB and Birmingham’s Southside.

We still remember the day she opened the store across the street from where she had her cart.  It was the perfect location. A warm, kindhearted, and inviting place, just like Lucy herself.

Lucy’s Coffee on University Boulevard

And like any local small business she had to confront the big corporate guys who wanted to squash her.  Who can forget the time Starbucks opened their store right next to Lucy’s. It was a stunning brash move.

Birmingham rallied by her side, and she won fair and square (Read this great column by Bob Blalock at the Birmingham News about the battle).

We also remember, last year at this time, when Lucy’s initiated a campaign to raise monies for  Urban Standard’s employees who were suddenly not working because a fire temporarily closed the coffee shop for months.

Birmingham AL
Lucy’s not just the owner. She’s there to make sure her customers’ coffee is just right!

Building community, that is Lucy’s secret.

Yesterday, without  fanfare, Lucy Bonds thanked everyone for her first 25 years on Facebook.  Here was her note:

And, just like that, it’s been 25 years! February 1993 – 2018! A big thank you to the most wonderful employees and customers one could ever hope for And a special nod to UAB—I’ve had the pleasure of meeting thousands of good (and very smart) people from all parts of the world. Thank you Birmingham

Lucy Bonds’s  husband Brian Kelleher, of Brian Kelleher Real Estate Team is offering free coffee today between 7:00am and noon at Lucy’s to celebrate her silver anniversary.

That’s just the way Lucy Bonds would want to celebrate -sharing memories  with loyal customers and friends. Building community. We love Lucy’s.

Author: Pat Byington

Longtime conservationist. Former Executive Director at the Alabama Environmental Council and Wild South. Publisher of the Bama Environmental News for more than 18 years. Career highlights include playing an active role in the creation of Alabama's Forever Wild program, Little River Canyon National Preserve, Dugger Mountain Wilderness, preservation of special places throughout the East through the Wilderness Society and the strengthening (making more stringent) the state of Alabama's cancer risk and mercury standards.