"I grew up in a house with visionaries, dreamers and doers. My mom and dad taught me to live a life of faith, to be a giver and to love deeply. My journey in creating The Table was rooted in the very soil that was cultivated in me in my younger years. Then I married an incredible man who continues to love me deeply, fight for me and encourage me to go after the dreams of my heart.
I have been told many times how awesome it is that I'm able to live my dream of owning a restaurant, a bakery and a coffee shop. To be honest I had never dreamed of doing any of those things. So, how did I get here?
Most times we are given just a little piece of our dream initially, and as we pursue our longing the dream begins to reveal itself. In a 10-year process of looking to find a space to do “something,” I finally found the old Cranford office building in Summer 2011. This historic site in Asheboro, NC (built in 1925) had a ceiling that was caving in, a tree growing through the brick, paneling that was separating from the old plaster and its green carpet was saturated with standing water…but all I could see was its beauty.
It’s perfect, my heart said. It took some convincing with my husband for him to see that this space was perfect, too. At the time it wasn’t available for purchase, but Andy and I both felt we were to just wait. If this was the space we were supposed to have, the doors would open. The opportunity came in early 2012 to make a bid on it, and we got it! The reality set in, and we began the process of restoration and defining what it was supposed to be.
The hours Andy and I spent scraping windows, removing plaster and painting the walls were a part of the process of The Table becoming a part of us. We wanted to create space where everyone felt welcomed, a space that would become a vital piece of the community.
I had never worked in a restaurant and knew nothing about that industry. However, whenever I thought about community I would think about the center of our home—the table. This was the place that we wanted to share with others. I was siting in a service one Sunday, and the pastor read from Luke 24:30. I had an epiphany, and I began to weep. I knew this was the name; this is what this space was to become:
“When [Jesus] was at THE TABLE, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them. Then their eyes were opened to recognize him…”
There is something special that happens when we take time to stop, gather and give thanks for what we have while sharing a meal; this is where community can take place. In every one of us we have an innate desire to be connected, to live in unity, and it can start with breaking bread together. Yes, this is it!
In the renovation process I discovered and put words to my dream: creating beautiful spaces for people to come; establishing a place where people can be employed and find purpose and grow in their work, feel belonging, be inspired again, take those deep breaths, and be found in a community of people that want the best for one another.
So, this month we are celebrating 5 years! Five years of learning a lot about myself. Five years cultivating a space for people to grow in their trade, their skills. Five years of seeing a community change and grow. How thankful I am to be a part of this incredible journey—to work with a team that desires to do this with me. And most of all, thank YOU for coming and sitting around our table. It’s because of you we exist."
-Dustie Gregson, Owner & Founder