Hidden Pearl returns to Upper Campus

After two years, students and staff will be able to purchase drinks from Hidden Pearl again


Allie Everhart

The Hidden Pearl coffee shop, located on Green Street in downtown McHenry, partnered with West Campus in 2019 to serve students and staff coffee at the beginning of the school day. Though it was closed months later to make room for the booster club, the partnership is set to return on Tuesday.

Vanessa Moreno, News Editor

Starting tomorrow, Upper Campus students and staff will be able to purchase coffee from Hidden Pearl once again from the concession stand next to the cafeteria. The coffee shop  will open before 7:00 a.m. and close after AIM.

Hidden Pearl is a brick-and-mortar coffee shop located at 1250 N. Green St. that has previously operated from Upper Campus’s concession stand. In 2019, the coffeeshop left to make room for MCHS’s fundraising group, Booster Club. 

Hidden Pearl wanted to come back first semester, but MCHS believed students were not ready for the privilege of having a coffee shop in their school, says assistant principal Greg Eiserman.

“First semester did not go super well with attendance, student behavior, and things like Devious Licks on TikTok,” he says. “There were so many issues we were seeing and we didn’t feel it was a good idea to bring [Hidden Pearl] in.”

According to Eiserman, student behavior and attendance has improved this semester. He believes this is due to students getting accustomed to in-person school after spending more than a year online. 

“As soon as we saw improvement, we reached out to [Hidden Pearl],” says Eiserman. “I talked to Dr. Prickett and said, ‘I think this is a good time for us to bring them back. We can use it as an incentive for students.’”

In previous years, students have been involved in the Hidden Pearl-MCHS partnership. Some students have worked at the Hidden Pearl concession stand and made money during the school day.

The Warrior Buddies, a group of special needs students, have also helped deliver drinks to staff during AIM. For the first few weeks, Warrior Buddies won’t be delivering drinks. 

“I think students are going to love [having Hidden Pearl back],” says Eiserman. “I think students who are new to the experience of having a coffee shop in their school are going to appreciate it quite a bit. It’s always been a sense of pride, there’s not many schools that can say they have their own coffee shop.”

Starting tomorrow, anyone can purchase from Hidden Pearl near the Upper Campus south entrance. The plan is for Hidden Pearl to stay at Upper Campus for the rest of the year, unless student behavior worsens.