Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Adventists Close Down Starbucks!

I know this is late, but it was interesting enough to post. At first I thought it a little humorous. Lots of Adventists today tell me that the church is changing,; it isn't as legalistic as it used to be. Well.... just read this.

Then I thought, they would strong arm Starbucks and the local grill so that the dreaded coffee and meat wouldn't tempt Adventists, but they won't stop their SDA owned hospitals from doing abortions on demand?

Something is still very wrong within Adventism.... very dark and disturbing....


Closed! Adventists Shut Down Starbucks at GC

The influx of Adventists
to Atlanta is a boon for
the city’s economy.
Estimates put the
financial impact of the
59th General Conference
Session at some $80
million, including $6
million for use of the
Georgia Dome and
adjacent Georgia World
Congress Center (GWCC),
which is hosting the session.

Restaurants near the

Georgia Dome have been

creative in catering to

Adventists’ culinary

preferences by promoting

an array of vegetarian eats.

Great Wraps in the CNN

Center has offered a

selection of vegetarian wraps

to supplement its meat options.

A cashier at the Mediterranean eatery

guessed that approximately 90% of his business

this week has been selling veggie foods. A Taco Bell vendor reported

selling mostly vegetarian foods as well. Indeed, all across Atlanta’s

downtown,vendors are capitalizing on Adventist crowds. Veggie

hotdog stands have popped up everywhere.However, having

Adventists in town isn’t all good

news for Atlanta’s businesses.

Mark Geiger, Associate Director of Communications

and Marketing for the GWCC confirmed in a phone

conversation with SPECTRUM

that the General Conference management asked

Starbucks to shut its doors.

Initially, the coffee retailer had been open for business,

and owing to its proximity to the conference exhibit hall, received

steady business. Then, mysteriously, after the first weekend

of the General Conference Session, Starbucks stood shuttered.

The shop’s abrupt closure fueled numerous rumors among exhibitors

and conference attendees.

Some, noting that the closure coincided roughly with incoming

president Ted Wilson’s election, suggested that Wilson was

responsible. Others said

that enough Adventists had complained to Starbucks—

some versions of the

story even had GC attendees picketing the establishment—

that the retailer decided to shut its doors. According to another rumor,

General Conference management paid Starbucks what it would have

lost in wages in order to shut it down.

There are two Starbucks outlets inside the GWCC—the now-closed

location in building C of the Congress Center, and another far on the

other end of the expansive World Congress Center in building A.

The Starbucks in building

A (which opens into building B) has remained open for business

throughout the GC Session. Rajmund Dabrowski, director of

communication for the General Conference, told SPECTRUM that because the

General Conference rented only buildings B and C, the church cannot

control concessions in building A.

Geiger clarified rumors by noting first that the GC management

did ask that Starbucks in Building C be closed for the duration of the GC Session,

and suggested that

caffeinated beverages were the reason. Geiger denied that Starbucks received any

remuneration for closing its doors. He noted that the GWCC wanted to keep its

customer (the GC) happy.

Sheri Clemmer, associate meeting planner for the GC Session, did not

respond, by the time of publication, to several requests for comment.

Thursday morning, reports began coming in that the church had also forced a

menu change in the Terraces Restaurant, the exclusive dining facility serving the

GC inside the World Congress Center. A cashier in the restaurant, located in

building B, revealed that General Conference management had asked Terraces to stop

serving beef hamburgers. Before Thursday, the restaurant had served both beef and

vegetarian patties.

Caffeinated beverages are still available inside the GWCC. A vending machine sells

Coca Cola products, some of which contain caffeine. In addition, the Starbucks in

building A remains open, though business is relatively sluggish, according to workers

in that locale.

Sports bars and grills surrounding the Congress Center are also doing less business

with the Adventists in town. Dantanna's, a steak, seafood and spirits restaurant in the

CNN Center directly across from the GWCC, has seen its sales dip. The restaurant’s bar

has sat empty this week, and steaks and seafood have failed to attract the mostly

vegetarian visitors who have taken over Atlanta’s downtown. Luckily, coverage of t

he FIFA World Cup, which Dantanna's has promoted aggressively, has helped to

win back some customers.