New Hamilton coffee house opening today as community gathering space, support for ex-felons

Ashley Ingle installs hours signage to the front door of The Fringe Coffee House, which is scheduled to open Thursday, Oct. 29, 2020 in Hamilton. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF
Ashley Ingle installs hours signage to the front door of The Fringe Coffee House, which is scheduled to open Thursday, Oct. 29, 2020 in Hamilton. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF

For close to two years, Patrick and Sarah Davis have been working to open the Fringe Coffee House in Hamilton.

They will celebrate their efforts with a grand opening today from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. at 918 High St.

They are planning live entertainment as well as two live DJ’s, live painting and graffiti from some local artists, face painting and air-brush tattoos by Skull Dollz, live music, spoken word, and more.

The Davises said the event will go on rain or shine and that there will be a large tent for overflow and social distancing requirements.

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The Fringe Coffee House is an indoor street art gallery/coffee shop that was created to employ and empower those who have been incarcerated. They believe that people are more than the worst thing they’ve ever done, Patrick Davis said.

“We don’t buy into this narrative that some people are lost causes,” Patrick Davis said.

Patrick Davis, an ex-felon who served time in prison, and his wife Sarah are ministers who want to assist those who are trying to rejoin society after their incarceration.

The shop will have six full-time employees who will work two shifts, starting at 6 a.m. and going into the night with live music.

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“It will be quite the art space,” he said.

Each employee will receive other kinds of assistance, including education, parenting classes, and addiction-recovery classes. Davis said he was grateful to the many small businesses and people who helped with donations, fundraisers, calls of encouragement and prayer.

Davis believes The Fringe Coffee House will be a place where people of different backgrounds can come together over coffee and a meal.

“We wanted a place that no matter what side of the tracks you’re from or socioeconomic status or political persuasion or race, that you came in here and you saw something that you identified with and could meet people who are different from you,” Patrick Davis said.

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The business will also facilitate Fringe Recovery meetings for those battling addiction, GED tutoring, parenting classes, mentorship, and post incarceration counseling, free tattoo removal for those with gang or racist tattoos, financial literacy classes, homeless outreach and more.

It will also feature a studio/art space where the most at-risk kids in the community with limited resources can learn music production, song writing of all genres, including hip hop, how to play an instrument, vocal lessons, professional photography and photo editing and videography and video editing all free of charge.

For more information on the vision and mission of The Fringe Coffee House visit their website: www.thefringecoffeehouse.com

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