Betsy’s Back Porch closes

WINDOM — Beloved neighborhood coffee shop and café Betsy’s Back Porch Coffee, at 5447 Nicollet Ave., closed its doors for good Dec. 14, after a long financial struggle.

The business was a popular neighborhood hangout during its seven-year run, but nearby Interstate 35W construction — which involved the temporary removal of the Diamond Lake Bridge — cut traffic significantly toward the end of the shop’s life. Owner Betsy Killion said in October of 2007 that revenue dropped 40 percent when the bridge went down in June, and it never bounced back.

She expected to close in September of that year, but the community rallied with a fundraiser involving local bands and artists, fire-truck tours, tons of food and other attractions. A total of $10,000 in proceeds went to Betsy’s business, which soldiered on for another year before the economy took a big tumble.

In a note to customers on her shop’s website, Killion said "the current economy has made it harder and harder to make ends meet, and we regret that we have had to close for good … We will miss seeing you at Betsy’s Back Porch!"   

Killion couldn’t be reached for further comment.