By Kane – May, 2021
Dana and Salvatore DeFranco, founder and owners of the Battle Grounds Coffee Company are no strangers to hard work and fostering a sense of community.
While completing college, The DeFrancos hatched a shared vision and weaved a coffee shop into the fabric of the Haverhill community where patrons gather on common grounds and share ideas. Kane encourages everyone to check it out.
Although not a coffee drinker himself, he was caught eyeballing several items from their outstanding menu and yes, he is quite a fan. Besides the coffee and food, what stood out most was the energy of Dana and Salvatore. As Kane observed, that energy is palatable and contagious. Kane felt an uptick in his mood and felt welcome among friends.
So, what makes Battle Grounds Coffee Company stand out? Glad you asked. It’s an unwavering support for all that is good. An emphasis on collaboration, immersing themselves into the community in a unique way, and maybe most important, a steadfast support for first responders and veterans!
Salvatore strongly emphasized that he and Dana are very appreciative of law enforcement and are strong in their public display of support. This was music to Kane’s ears. It was evident in the soul and strength of Sal’s delivery when we discussed this important value. Imagine being truly appreciated regardless of societal trends. Kane is also a strong supporter of our first responders and veterans regardless of political trends.
Bringing veterans and first responders together is woven into the culture and mantra of the Battle Grounds Coffee Company. “Here to Serve”
Every Thursday morning, they host a Veterans Coffee hour where veterans of all ages and backgrounds have an opportunity to gather. Kane knows the value of having a place to gather because it breeds a sense of community and connection. As we’ve learned in past articles, having both is an important component of battling isolation or prevent distant divides to grow for anyone experiencing life transitions, stressors, or just everyday challenges. Having a welcoming location and opportunity to share a cup of brew is surprisingly effective.
Battle Grounds Coffee Company is beautifully decorated in these themes and even incorporates them in the names of their coffee roasts and menu items.
On May 16th Dana is organizing Coffee with a Cop. She was excited about the response received from local and state law enforcement agencies. This event will coincide with the addition of an outside patio.
Kane found Sal and Dana’s background and drive intriguing. Both have strong roots in military culture. Sal served as a Navy SEAL and Dana is the granddaughter, daughter, and niece of military members of varied branches. Dana proudly reported that her grandfather “was quite a big deal” serving as a decorated war hero in the Battle of the Bulge.
Kane was curious about how Sal’s own military service helped him in building a business. “The military teaches you fundamental skills, follow through, putting the team first, and accountability. Another important component is being responsible for the welfare of others. Sal communicated the importance of not giving up, working hard, and making the vision happen. He discussed the importance of life experiences.
Dana is also a hard charger and shared that she worked 7 days a week as an Occupational Therapist when the government shut down businesses during the pandemic, and now, she is in law school. Kane thought wow I bet these people don’t sit around in the kitty pool in the backyard all day like he does. Maybe he should take his exercise plan more seriously.
As a side note, it’s wonderful that these two hard charging people found each other. Not too many people could be finishing college, while opening up a business at the same time. In fact, Sal and Dana opened up Battle Grounds Coffee Company two days after getting married. It is heartwarming for Kane to hear the American Dream is very much alive for those willing to put their head down and work hard. Recently the business has grown to 20 employees.
So go check it out! The coffee is strong, the food is great and the company even better. Thank you, Sal and Dana, for backing the blue; you are both quite an inspiration.
Woof Kane Peaslee
Columnist the Valley Patriot ◊