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Meet Cammy Garman of Palm & Boy Coffee and Acai in Ventura County

Today we’d like to introduce you to Cammy Garman.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I opened my cafe in May 2017. At the time it was called Stoked Coffee, and over a year ago we changed our name to Palm & Boy Coffee and Acai. The first year was a total success. We were way busier than I expected.

I had over 20 employees in three months time and was blown away by the support of downtown Ventura.The first year was also a total blur. It was so many hard days on my feet with no breaks. I worked for almost nine months, seven days a week, 12 hour days.

At the time I had just met my now husband, Zachary. I was pretty sure he would dump me due to the consumption my shop was requiring of me. We ended up getting married later in the year. As we approached a year of business, we got a surprise pregnancy and entered a second summer in downtown.

A few months later, we joined together with my mom who was recently retired on opening the second shop in Hollywood Beach, CA. That location has now been open for almost a year. So in the time of opening our doors, Zach and I got married, had a baby and helped my mom open our second location.

It’s been the most stressful and rewarding three summers of business.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
My personal journey has been probably the opposite of smooth. I think that’s part of being a business owner is seeing the whole other side of the business. I think it would be so easy to look at my trendy little shop run by a trendy little family and think we’ve had it really easy.

I’ve experienced some real stress since opening. I’m not complaining, but I will always be very transparent when it comes to my shop. Paying back debt is one of my biggest stresses. I think a lot of owners put on this facade that they never got in debt, never experienced debt or have never owned anything to anyone.

I am proud to say I have paid a lot of my debt off, but a bad business buy out left me personally financially broke. I got really prideful and put paying off my debt as my first life priority. But it was in no way healthy. My marriage was effected, and it put a lot of strain on trying to run a business while pregnant. I will say this.

Being married and running a business is hard. Money is hard. Growing a human while trying to run employees and be on top of life is hard. I owe everything to God. It’s been a daily prayer to get through each day. I owe a lot to my parents too. They really helped me pull through my pregnancy and dealing with the stress of business. My love language is words, and they encouraged me so much.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Palm & Boy Coffee and Acai – what should we know?
Our cafe specializes in espresso and acai bowls. We serve really good coffee from our good friends Handlebar Coffee in Santa Barbara, CA.

We are well-known for our acai bowls. They are really big, and we use mostly organic produce from local vendors all around us.

I am most proud of my crew. I would honestly say that’s what sets us the most apart from any cafe or coffee shop. Our baristas are really kind and upbeat. They are happy to work and really take care of our people.

Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
My husband Zachary is my biggest cheerleader.

My parents and in-laws. My father in law has always supported me. He comes into the cafe a few times a week.

My dad. For always picking up my calls about taxes and deadlines.

My regulars for sure. To name a few: Alex and River, Mr. Cool, Maria, Annie, Eli and Susan, Celeste and Sarah… These guys have supported me since day one. Always so kind to us as we learned and grew.

Molly & Gregg my courtyard neighbors: for being the best mentors and encouragers.

Dr. Terry Cole for bringing Riley into my world amidst running a business.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
@createbyblake @blakesilva

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