Current Rose Chocolatier owner Marguerite McClay, left, celebrates today with incoming owner and Lemonade Living President/Founder Melissa Arias at the shop at 149 Central Park Square. Photo by Jenn Bartram/ladailypost.com
By CAROL A. CLARK
Los Alamos Daily Post
Effective Oct. 1, Lemonade Living, a nonprofit that empowers the lives of young adults with developmental disabilities, will become the owner and operator of Rose Chocolatier at 149 Central Park Square.
Current owner Marguerite McClay explained that the goal is to provide developmentally disabled adults with employment training and ongoing employment in a small business entrepreneurship environment. Rose Chocolatier will be the kitchen space in town where the same variety of baked goods, chocolates, coffees and hot chocolate the community is used to will be offered in a social entrepreneurship model with the job training program.
Program plans include adding breakfast and lunch items to the kitchen offerings with the help of the Los Alamos Cooperative Market. The breakfast and lunch items will include burritos, prepared salads, sandwiches and wraps. There also will be packaged cheese, yogurts, kefir, orange juice, kombucha, smoothies and more.
“I am so excited to see this new development happening with the shop,” McClay told the Los Alamos Daily Post, adding that she has wanted to retire and feels this is the best way to continue the business into the future and ensure the continued employment for her employees and others who will be coming in soon.
Rose Chocolatier is now part of a larger goal to develop a comprehensive farm to kitchen project. The Farm is at the North Mesa stables. Farm activities are offered through a cooperative of stable owners and their animals while the farm is under construction. The Farm, Rose Chocolatier, and eventually a commercial kitchen operation, will be economically self-sustaining, creating fun, rewarding, and greatly therapeutic work activities for teens and adults with developmental disabilities.
“We’ve been working on this project for a long time and we’re so excited and thankful for Marguerite’s generosity, friendship and guidance,” Lemonade Living President/Founder Melissa Arias said.
The Farm will produce yarn for fiber arts, goat milk, eggs, flowers and vegetables next to one of the few remaining historic homestead cabins on the Pajarito Plateau. A broader year round job training program, inspired by the living skills program at Los Alamos High School, is being developed as well.
Learn more about Lemonade Living by clicking here.