Editor's note: North Shore Cafe closed for business in January 2012.
Volunteers at North Shore Cafe may whip up proceeds with their kitchen concoctions, but this business is no charity case.
The cafe offers a variety of foods from soups to sandwiches and drinks as simple as a cup of joe to a more complex fruit smoothie. Free Wi-Fi, live bands and dine-in or carryout options are designed to draw regulars and passersby.
On any given day, volunteers from North Shore Church in New Baltimore stir up homemade soups or serve guests with smiles.
"I love working here. It just gets me out of the house," said 10-year-old Grant Lemmer of Marine City, who was on break from school and helping his mother, Gail, in the kitchen.
"He just likes helping people all the time," his mother said.
And, he came to the right place.
The cafe is one way the church stays involved in the community
North Shore Church Pastor Christopher Steinle said the goal of the cafe is to make it self-sufficient so proceeds can go to charitable causes.
"We just try and stay involved in our community," he said, adding volunteers make food for various initiatives outside of the cafe, as well.
The building, which the church leases, is the former home to Jesse's Food and Spirits. Volunteers completely gutted and renovated the space, installing a pantry and children's play room. People and businesses in the area donated the flooring as well as some couches, kitchen equipment and supplies before the cafe opened last year, according to volunteers who help sustain it.
The cafe at 35100 23 Mile will close for the holidays and reopen Jan. 3. Its normal hours are 10 a.m.- 5:30 p.m. Monday-Saturday. It's closed Sundays.