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About us

Black River Coffee Bar sits just off the Black River in the historic downtown of Springfield, VT. The building was initially built in 1882 to house the town fire engines, and since has had a long history of business in downtown Springfield


My name is Mike Schmitt

I grew up in a small town in California, moved to Silicon Valley, then to Maui, and finally settling here in Springfield VT. Stop by the Coffee Bar and we can talk-story while I will fill in between the lines. I will most likely be the crazy guy in an Aloha shirt, shorts, and flip-flops.

I love food, nature, and people and like seeing all of this in harmony. While living on Maui I came to embrace three fundamentals of life – Aloha, Malama, Pono – Give of yourself to others, love; take care of yourself, others, and the water and land; Respect all that is around you. I hope that you will find Black River Coffee Bar a place where you will experience this, a place you feel at home in, and a center for community life…and really good coffee!


Springfield Community

Springfield Vermont stands on the traditional land of the Pennacook and Abenaki People. We respectfully acknowledge the Pennacook and Abenaki People, who have stewarded this land for generations. Springfield now sits at the crossroads of many great things. We are very proud of our Town and encourage you to explore year-round, and if you need a recommendation of what to do, ask us; we each have our favorites in the Coffee Bar. Also, you can check out Rocket in Vermont   as he discovers Springfield.


A Rich History Of Industry And Invention

There is much to tell and explore about Springfield’s history and importance in industrial growth for our country. Springfield was charted in 1761 and initially thrived due to its agricultural land, but soon its biggest asset became the Black River and its waterfalls. This quickly led to Springfield being a flourishing mill town. As the technology evolved, Springfield became the center of the machine tooling industry, boasting thousands of patents, many still in effect. Jones and Lambson Machine Co moved into Town in 1888 and quickly became one of the biggest employers, ushering the Town into yet another production level. Soon after Fellows Gear Shaper Company and Lovejoy tools entered the mix, expanding the Town further. Springfield was a manufacturing powerhouse; it was 7th on the list of Hitler’s bombing targets in WWII. Springfield was also the home of exciting inventions, such as the Breech Loading Gun, the Steam Shovel, the Sheep Shearing Machine, the Corn Planter, and the Common Spring Clothespin. Eventually, machine tooling became a less prominent source of business, leading Springfield to find new innovative ways of putting itself on the map. Here a a few great resources to learn and see more about Springfield of the past.
Springfield Town Library historical archives 

Springfield Historical Society and museum
Stellafane telescope organization 

Fast forward to today, Springfield Vermont is seeing new growth as old factories are being turned into modern uses. The Town is again a hub of industry and invention and supporting this movement are institutions like Vermont Telephone with their high-speed fiber data line and the Black River Innovation Campus.

Parks & Rec

Another crossroads that Springfield Vermont sits at is fun and recreation. Essentially to get to anything fun in Vermont you need to go through Springfield. Whether you are into the physical or mental kind of fun you will find it in or near to us. For a comprehensive list of activities around town check out the community calendar


Trailing Along

Springfield has a number of scenic local trails for day hikes, ski touring/snow shoeing, mountain/flat biking, and casual walking. Generally, the public trails are woods roads or dirt footpaths through meadows and woodlands.

Hiking trail details and maps 

Snowmobile trails weave all throughout Vermont and Springfield has its fair share running
through old woods, open pastures, and gorgeous vista spots .

Check out the map

Snowshoes at the library? Yep, pop into Springfield library and flash your library card and go for a snowshoe adventure.

Downhill Runs

Springfield provides spectacular vistas of some of the best skiing in the North East at Okemo Mountain

Killington is home to great skiing and so many other winter sporting events and easily accessible through Springfield Vermont

Marshmallows over Campfire


Tree Farm Campground is minutes from downtown Springfield, Vermont and central to all kinds of outdoor activities and historical sites. 

Parker Hill Farm is a working farm with chickens, ducks, gardens, and alpacas. There are fully furnished tents with everything you need, including king- sized beds, luxury linens, electricity, wi-fi, & heat/AC. All tents have mini kitchens & ensuite bathrooms.

Sleep and Eat


Bountiful Agriculture

Don’t let the old brick factory facades fool you; Springfield Vermont has always been a prized area for agriculture by the indigenous Pennacook and Abenaki People to today with the resurgence of farms, orchards, and ranching. From Black River Produce Company, one of the largest distributors of local food products in the North East, to Farmer's Markets and family-run farm stands, fresh local food is always available. Springfield is home to some of the finest artisan maple sugar producers, be sure to search out for the famed bourbon barrel maple syrup. If you are looking for something to sink your canines into, we have many fine growers like:

Vermont Wagyu

Cavendish Game Birds
Winter View Farm

Not to let the brick and mortar industries take all of the credit of innovation George Darrow famed Springfield botanist created the modern commercial strawberry.

Education and School Spirit

Springfield has always taken education seriously and boasts the oldest school house in Vermont.

In addition to the award winning Springfield School District, the River Valley Tech Center  provides specialized career-based training to High School students in the area.

Black River Innovation Campus is a technology actuator for young technology companies and supports technology training for the youth of the community,  and Vermont Community College has a satellite campus in Town.


School Spirit is one of the keys the Towns success and resurgence, the Springfield Cosmos boasts an alumni program with thousands of active members several who graduated in the 1940’s. Every July the town turns green and white for the week-long Alumni celebration ending in one of the craziest parades you will ever see.

Not to say Springfield is the reason but Dartmouth University one of the 8 Ivy League schools is just a hop-skip-and-jump away, so lots of smart people hang out here. Also, the Vermont Academy chartered in 1872 is a coed college preparatory boarding and day school with an impressive list of alumni including Bruce Brown and Joe Perry.


Business on your mind?

Check out these local business resources

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Springfield Regional Chamber of Commerce

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Springfield Regional Development Corporation


Black River

Innovation Campus

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