Coffee Stands Spread Awareness of Samantha Koenig Abduction
CalGirls Coffee has a creative way to spread awareness
Anchorage police are working around the clock to find Samantha Koenig, the 18-year-old who police said was kidnapped from her Midtown coffee stand February 1.
Local businesses are doing their part to pitch in by spreading the word.
Using coffee cups and seminars, the idea is to spread the word about Koenig while also making sure what happened to her doesn't happen again.
It’s all about preparation for CalGirls Coffee Shop owner Allison Martin. Nine days after Samantha Koenig was kidnapped from her job at Common Grounds Espresso, stands like Martin’s – whose shop is just down the road from Common Grounds on Tudor – are stocking up on things they can use to protect themselves.
“I have pepper spray up in the windows now, the shop's armed and it just makes it [a] little bit more safer,” said Martin.
But it’s not just about her shop's safety; Martin is helping to spread the word to bring back Koenig alive one mocha at a time. “It’s my way of helping out, because I do own the shop and the cups were one of the quickest ways to get the word out.”
Her coffee cups are a basic white, with a miniature version of the flyer that is posted all around town.
“New people that have seen my cups and they are just like, oh wow, I didn't even know or I don't look at the newspaper,” said Martin.
Perkup Espresso is lending a hand as well.
With 23 girls at four shops, they have been held up at gunpoint twice before, which is why they are holding a free protection awareness seminar for baristas around town to learn how to get out of dangerous situations.
“It’s actually a big deal, the girls range anywhere from 18-years-old on up, and a lot of them are young and haven't been in situations like that,” said Perkup owner Richard Gerondale. “There [are] a lot of females out there that don't have a clue what to do and I think if it helps one person out its going to be worth it.”
The search for Samantha is making Anchorage more conscious.
“It's definitely an eye opener, it didn't even cross my mind until something like this did happen,” said Martin. “It just makes us more aware that it can happen to anybody.”
The protection awareness seminar is free to all baristas, waitresses and bartenders who want to learn how to prevent and protect themselves from dangerous situations.
They are holding it at the Anchorage Police Training Center off of Jewel Lake and Dimond Boulevard on February 21, from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. There will also be a candlelight vigil for Koenig, this Saturday, at Town Square from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.