Greensmith Studio and Cafe Opens on Emmett Street in Battle Creek
Gerard Gausselin was looking for a studio to create various art projects and noticed the old greenhouse at Greensmith Florists wasn’t being used anymore. So he and his wife, Patrice, approached longtime owner Roger Jacobs about renting the space. That’s when they found out that after owning Greensmith Florist and Gifts for more than 20 years, Jacobs was ready to sell the whole place.
The business housed Addington Hills Café until Jacobs closed the restaurant in 2017. Four years later, on June 9th, that space re-opened as a café selling MOO-ville Ice Cream, delicious baked goods, and premium coffee. And you can still sit outside on the garden patio and enjoy it.
Gerard Gausselin said they wanted a high-quality coffee, so he approached the owners of Café Rico in downtown Battle Creek about letting them sell their coffee. He said owners Tristan and Jackson Bredehoft liked the idea, so they’re serving Café Rica coffee at Greensmith.
Gausselin said he’s getting close to retirement, or at least semi-retirement, and needed a creative outlet and a new project. His wife, Patrice, had just retired from Amway Corporation after 32 years as a scientist. She was ready for a new challenge too. Gausselin says they were down in Florida in March when the call came from Roger Jacobs, and they bought the business from him a short time later.
The building still has the gift shop upstairs, and the café has lots of tables and chairs, and also something very unique: one-of-a-kind art, done by Gerard, his brother Bill and their father Rich. Each artist has his own style. There are no reproductions, and pretty much everything is for sale. They’ve installed new track lighting and re-painted the interior of the café.
Gerard has some very large floral-themed paintings on display. Bill has a lot of rock-themed creations. There’s a painting of the famed rock musician Kurt Cobain, that has guitar strings imbedded into it. There’s a painting of Keith Richards that uses hundreds of Rolling Stone’s logo pixels to form his face. And since both brothers are big fans of the movie, Caddyshack, there are also paintings with that theme. There are works that portray people like Muhammad Ali, John Lennon, and other key figures in American Pop Culture.
The greenhouse has been turned into a studio, and the Gausselins are also using it to grow plants too. “It’s a little warm out here right now,” said Gerard Gausselin, “but it’s a wonderful place to work when the temperature outside is about 30 degrees.”
The Gausselins have lots of irons in the fire for the future. They’ve struck a partnership with one of the top chefs in Grand Rapids to sell gourmet pasta meals. They’re frozen, and you’ll be able to stop in and pick up dinner on the way home. The café is available for events, and bookings are filling up fast for the summer. “We have several top chefs at the ready to come in and use our kitchen for events,” said Gerard Gausselin. “The plan is to eventually be open for dinner on Friday and Saturday night.” He said they could rent the place to a chef, hire a chef, or even work some sort of partnership to have regular restaurant hours. Gausselin said they might use their talents to create decorated Christmas trees that they can just bring into someone’s home at Christmas time. He said some people want a nice tree, but may be getting to the point in their lives where they just can’t manage it safely. He said they are also talking with their next-door neighbors, the Art Center of Battle Creek, about some partnerships, or putting on outside events.
Mayor Mark Behnke is already a fan and reached out to the community on social media.
“Congratulations, Patrice Gausselin and Gerard Gausselin on the purchase and now the opening of the Greensmith Studio, Cafe, and Flower Shop on Emmett Street in Battle Creek. I wish the Gausselin Family the best in this new business endeavor. Please stop by and check this establishment out today.”
- Who: Greensmith Studios
- What: Floral-Gallery-Events
- When: Mon-Thu 10 am – 4 pm, Fri-Sat 10am-6pm, Closed Sunday
- Where: 295 E Emmett St, Battle Creek, MI 49017
- Phone: 269-965-7704
Greensmith Studios Open
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