From a first-year: lay off Starbucks


I love both Starbucks and Downtown Deli. Why do I need to make this statement? Apparently, enjoying both Starbucks and Greencastle establishments is no longer acceptable to the Greencastle and DePauw community.
As new Greencastle residents, my friends and I did our best to visit all the various eateries Greencastle has to offer. I have been to almost all the popular places, and loved them for their small-town quirkiness and good food.
I also have enjoyed a Starbucks drink one or two . . . or six times.
As September rapidly reached the opening date for Starbucks, I was counting down the days. I am a huge Starbucks fan. I even have the Gold card (the highest reward status deems you worthy of a gold colored card with your name on it). I could not wait for the store to open in Greencastle.
And neither could anyone else - or so it seemed.
Lynda Dunbar, the owner of Downtown Deli, said to The DePauw on Sept. 18 that she was, "thrilled to death about Starbucks." And now she is closing her doors and not eliminating Starbucks as a contributing factor.
She's not the first to do this. The Blue Door Cafe had issues with Starbucks from day one, even shortening its hours early on in Starbucks' existence (but they have recently returned to their normal hours).
Some students are even partaking in the blame game on Starbucks, albeit by joining with Dunbar and bouncing around the idea without actually saying it.
Look folks: when I want Starbucks, I want Starbucks. I want a drink where I know exactly what it will taste like and that I love. On the other hand, when I want just a general warm drink, I'm not going to hike all the way to Starbucks when Cafe Roy is closer.
And when I want food, Starbucks never even comes to mind.
I cannot get a pretzel burger at Starbucks. Nor can I get ice cream or a sandwich. Starbucks is not taking anyone's food business away, trust me. Their pastry offerings are not a meal.
As a friend of mine said, if the florist closes you know whose fault it will be - Starbucks!
While I see how the construction might have restricted traffic to Greencastle's businesses during the summer, and how people might turn to Starbucks instead of The Blue Door for a fancy cup of coffee, I do not believe this is enough to completely take down an establishment.
I loved exploring Greencastle's food options, and I will be very sad to see Downtown Deli close. Dunbar was so friendly when my friends and I came in after a football game. She sat down with us and genuinely wanted to get to know us freshmen - something that would rarely happen outside a small town. But I love - just as much - the passion teas and gingerbread lattes with a taste I can only get at Starbucks. Is that such a crime? Can't DePauw and the Greencastle community support both? Starbucks is not single-handedly taking anyone's business away, since it offers a specific product that no other establishment here offers.
It is possible to like Starbucks and still be a loyal patron to Greencastle establishments. If Downtown Deli was going to stick around, I very well could have earned a gold card there, too. And if a first-year feels that kind of loyalty, I know the upperclassmen do as well.
I will continue to be a patron of not only Starbucks, but also of the local Greencastle businesses. And I refuse to feel guilty for it.

- Sausser is a freshmen from Indianapolis, Ind., with an undecided major.