MECHANICSBURG – The Hive Market and Deli will host a grand opening today, Feb. 14, at 22 S. Main St., the same location well known as a downtown event space for the past year. Manager Lyndsey Murphy said she plans to bake homemade bread, cinnamon rolls and muffins while her mother, Amy Forrest, will create a variety of soups, salads and to-go lunches and dinners.
Murphy said she plans to offer four different salads every day, three entrees and two box lunches. Curbside service will be offered to those who place orders before 2 p.m. and call as they drive through Mechanicsburg. She’s working with a variety of local producers including Dugan Road Creamery, Saddleberk Pork, Robert Rothschild Farm and Hemisphere Coffee Roasters, as well as a local beef producer and an egg producer. She plans to have fresh fruits and vegetables from nearby when they are in season.
Murphy, the fifth generation to grow up on her family farm just outside Mechanicsburg, said it is her goal to help connect people to healthy and locally produced food products.
“Growing up on a farm, agriculture is a part of you,” she said. “I wanted to be somehow in the middle between food and the people who grow it and the people who eat it, and trying to create a better experience and facilitate that. That’s what we’re trying to do with the cooking classes, but that takes a long time to build up. We’ll still do cooking classes, but I think it will do a better service by having good healthy food and also showcasing Champaign County and local surrounding counties’ farmers.”
After graduating from Mechanicsburg High School, Murphy attended Ohio State University, then worked in communications in Washington, D.C. before returning to her hometown. In August 2016 Murphy bought the building in which she lives and works from Paul and Grace Kurtz, the owners of Hemisphere Coffee Roasters. In December 2016 The Hive hosted its first event, a cooking class, and continued to host events and parties throughout 2017.
“It’s what I think Main Street needs, which is somewhere that’s open all the time, that has food, that can be somewhere where people can walk in and out of, that helps be a reason why people would come to town instead of just on the weekends for events,” she said. “I hope this serves town a little better than just the event space does.”
While in high school, Murphy began helping her mother with the newly created catering business and continued to help with large events even while she was away at college. The business started in her house, then moved into an industrial kitchen in one of the barns until they decided they needed a larger space that could be better regulated by the Health District. At that point, Forrest opened an industrial kitchen in the back of a lawyer’s office two doors from the building that would eventually become The Hive.
Murphy said her mother was happy to have her daughter back closer to her, and that neither wanted to be alone in their business ventures. The new market and deli will represent a combining of their talents that Murphy hopes will become a staple of downtown Mechanicsburg.
“I want this to become a place that people can count on in Mechanicsburg for food,” said Murphy. “Everybody is so busy nowadays. Mom is an amazing cook and she loves to cook for people and we want to make life a little bit easier. We want to be a good staple in Mechanicsburg for delicious and healthy food.
“Hopefully one day I’d like to expand our operation back out to our family farm,” she added. “If there is any way that we can grow and raise more of what we’re putting into these businesses I want to do that. Then I’d love to create an on-farm experience too, so we can take people to the actual farm, let them touch, see and feel what they’re eating and where it’s coming from.”
The Hive Market and Deli will open on Valentine’s Day, Feb. 14, and Murphy says it’s because they love their customers.
She has bought pipe and black drape that will cut the event space in two, because they do not yet have enough inventory to fill up the entire space. The front half will feature refrigerators and display cases for the products they’re selling.
They will continue to offer cooking classes. Each participant will have a small burner and cutting board on tables set up throughout the space. Murphy and Forrest will be available for parties and events such as baby showers and rehearsal dinners. To make reservations or for more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 937-869-6280.
Christopher Selmek can be reached at 937-508-2304