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French Students Run Montpelier Crêpe Cart to Raise Money for School Trip

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Published July 20, 2022 at 10:00 a.m.


La Bonne Crêpe - COURTESY
  • Courtesy
  • La Bonne Crêpe

Wander the Capital City Farmers Market in Montpelier this summer and you'll likely find a line of people waiting in front of La Bonne Crêpe. The food cart offers sweet and savory crêpes most Saturdays. Its revenues will help Montpelier High School students pay for an educational trip to the French-speaking Caribbean island of Guadeloupe. 

Brigitte Savard, a Montréal native who's been teaching French for 17 years, said her students have developed a pen-pal exchange with peers in Guadeloupe. In April, she'll take 32 juniors and seniors on a weeklong trip to learn about the island's culture and history, hike an active volcano, and visit an elementary school.

"I wanted to make sure that ... every student who wanted to go could go, regardless of what they contribute financially," Savard said. 

In a stroke of serendipity, one of Savard's friends had previously run a crêpe business at the Norwich Farmers Market, and his cart was just sitting in his garage. He sold it to Savard for a nominal fee.

Every student going on the trip is expected to work two or three shifts at the farmer's market. Some spin crêpes on one of the cart's three griddles, while others handle the cash box, post on social media and arrange staffing.

They typically offer four made-to-order menu options each week — with seasonal items such as tomatoes, strawberries and mushrooms sourced from the market. Prices range from $4 to $8. 

Savard initially hoped to raise $6,000 to subsidize the trip but now expects to surpass that amount by the time the market wraps up in October.

Rising junior Alara Kohn has worked at the cart. She said she's excited to meet her Guadeloupean pen pal and to experience the island's culture and food. Her favorite crêpe is a simple one she learned to make last school year during French class: lemon juice and powdered sugar. 

"It's sour and sweet," Kohn said. "Kind of like lemonade."

Find the student-run biz on Instagram and Facebook at @labonnecrepemhs.