By: Amanda Egan
Mountain Goat is the latest addition to Greenville’s growing coffee shop scene – but this space has much more to offer than your average cup of joe.
Not only can you grab a latte and a pastry to fuel a study session, but you can check out the attached bike shop, attend classes about outdoor exploration, or enjoy a wide selection of local canned beers. This is not your typical coffee shop – it is a place that seeks to foster community.
The concept emerged from the existing non-profit Christian ministry GOAT (Great Outdoor Adventure Trips), which has been giving middle and high schoolers from under-resourced areas the opportunity to connect with the outdoors and foster leadership skills since 2008. The organization was previously housed in a climbing gym, which closed earlier this year. There are plans for a new gym to be built in the future, but the coffee shop is a way to connect with the wider community.
“I think we just tossed it around as an idea and it just started sounding better and better,” barista Erica Solon said about the development of the coffee shop concept.
Housed in an old auto-repair shop, Mountain Goat has a spacious, minimalistic atmosphere. Natural light comes streaming in from the floor to ceiling windows, and there is plenty of seating both at tables and at the bar. Coffee is supplied from Methodical and pastries come from Upcountry Provisions. Wine and beer selections span from across the Southeast.
One goal of Mountain Goat is to serve as a family-friendly space for kids involved in the GOAT organization to come after school. The organization offers tutoring twice a week as well as an ongoing mentoring program for students. Mary Neel McClintock, the GOAT Program Coordinator, explains the vision for these programs as they transition to the coffee shop space which is near Berea Middle and Greenville High School.
“The goal would be for them to walk over after school, hang out, build relationships, eventually get a mentor with them, and then we also have the outdoor side of GOAT. The students who want to go on outdoor trips will go and we teach them about leadership skills and outdoor activities,” McClintock said.
GOAT also offers internships for the summer or semester which could be of interest to Furman students. In addition to receiving class credit, an intern will work with at-risk youth and exemplify leadership skills. As a Christian organization, interns will also participate in teaching various Bible lessons.
Be sure to stay tuned to Mountain Goat’s social media platforms, which will advertise upcoming events and clinics on topics such as mountain biking, bike maintenance, fly fishing, rock climbing/bouldering, paddle boarding and white-water rafting.
Mountain Goat is not only a place to study, hold a meeting, or hang out with friends, it is also a place dedicated to making a positive impact and promoting a healthy lifestyle. And it’s only ten minutes away from Furman – a win-win situation all around.
120 Shaw St. Greenville, SC
Hours: Mon-Fri 7am-9pm, Sat 8am-9pm