City Light Coffee, a nonprofit coffee shop located in Downtown Binghamton, is extending its hours of operation this finals week to give away free coffee and snacks to stressed college students. Other than the whistling sound of the espresso machine, City Light Coffee is a go-to study spot for many students because of its quiet atmosphere, similar to Glenn G. Bartle Library during finals week.
According to Jay Sackett, a head volunteer for City Light Coffee, from May 9 until May 15, City Light Coffee will be open from 9 a.m. until 11 p.m. to offer freebies for students to help them survive the end of the semester.
“We’ll have free pizza for lunch, free cookies throughout the day, free school supplies, free pancakes at night, free coffee all day and espresso drinks until 7 p.m.,” Sackett said.
Since it opened three semesters ago, word of City Light’s free coffee and study space has spread like wildfire. There are few businesses in the city of Binghamton that serve without the expectation to make money, but City Light has since brought in more volunteers to accommodate the higher volume of guests. Groups like the Binghamton chapter of co-ed service-based fraternity Alpha Phi Omega, community members who attend the church and other students from Binghamton University and Davis College have volunteered to help out at the coffee shop.
“The crowd definitely changed from first to second semester,” Sackett said. “Business picked up because word spread, so it has been far more steady. During finals week, we could definitely use more student volunteers throughout the week; whenever students are free, they can come in. There’s a lot of cleaning that needs to be done in between each [day].”
Moving forward, Sackett said City Light wants to continue to build its relationship with both the students and the University. Next semester, City Light is planning on expanding its menu and reaching out to the University to work together to facilitate the off-campus study spot, Sackett said.
“We will have a new manager going into the next semester, but we plan on doing everything the same as we have the last two,” Sackett said. “We’re looking forward to having a break over the summer, but looking forward to the students coming back in the fall. We love the atmosphere the students bring here.”