Mural brings bright spot after damage downtown

by Celia Shortt


Cher McWilliams, owner of The Leaf and Bean in downtown Newnan, showcases the mural done by local artist Jessica Williams on the plywood outside the shop. 

Newnan’s downtown coffee shop, The Leaf and Bean, has been sporting some new artwork of late – which helps bring a bright spot to the damage the shop suffered a few weeks ago.

In May, the outside wall of The Leaf and Bean was damaged when a vehicle drove into it. The wall was structurally damaged and the large window shattered. A large piece of plywood was placed over the missing window.

After the damage, Cher McWilliams, owner of the coffee shop, posted on Facebook asking if any local artist wanted “to turn an eyesore into a piece of art.”

Jessica Williams said yes.

“I could imagine what she must have been going through when someone did that to her business,” Williams said.

Williams said her youth pastor had seen McWilliams’ post on Facebook and told her about it.

“I had been there a few days before and saw the plywood,” said Williams. “They were open, but I thought they were closed. She said she needed help making it known she was open again.”

For the past few years, Williams has been creating reclaimed wood signs. She also does wood and canvas signs and custom murals.

She went to McWilliams and told her she would be happy to paint a mural on the plywood.

The mural took three days to paint. Williams said her husband prepped everything, and she just got to have fun painting.

McWilliams was thrilled with the work and touched by what Williams did.

“She did this out of the goodness of her heart,” she said.

The best part was “just knowing I could help someone,” added Williams.

McWilliams plans to start construction to repair the window and exterior wall in a few weeks. She will also have new lighting installed inside The Leaf and Bean before the repairs begin.

Once construction starts, she expects the it to take five days to complete and plans on remaining open the entire time.

In addition to the repairs, McWilliams has some other exciting things in store for the summer. Next week, she is launching a line of protein shakes for the menu, and she will soon have the new summer wine list available.

She also plans on having a grand opening party for The Leaf and Bean once the construction is completed.

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