BEDFORD COUNTY, Pa (WTAJ)–For their graduation project, the Leadership Bedford County Class of 2023 is repurposing the historic Coffee Pot landmark in Bedford.

The Coffee Pot was built in 1927 as a lunch place adjacent to a gas station. In 1937, it became a bar adjacent to a next to a hotel. In 2004, it was bought and moved to its current location next to the fairgrounds.

When coming up with ideas back in October, the team thought about the Coffee Pot and recognized that it needed some refurbishing. Furthermore, all the team has a passion for wanting to improve.

“The building, cause it’s going through the age, has deteriorated a little bit,” Bedford Speedway promoter Joe Padula said. “So, our group is trying to restore it, and we’re all passionate about it. It’s something we’re excited to try and undertake.”

The team plans to repurpose the building’s exterior and interior. That means fixing the roof, repainting, and sealing the building cracks.

Leadership Bedford County member Alexis Trenger said their team of 18 plans to do the interior parts. However, they have sought help and quotes on the exteriors from professionals. They expect the project to cost $50,000.

“First of all, we need to address the spouting and roof. There has never been spouting on this building,” Trenger said. “So it’s lead to a lot of water damage and rot issues. We’re working with many local businesses to try to raise funds and get the labor to help replace the roof. Then also redo the outside coating so that way there’s no more rot in it.”

The team is only in the beginning stages and is looking for help from the community. So far, they’ve raised around $10,000.

At this point, the team is unsure how they want to repurpose the interior. It’s their goal to make a utilized space for locals and tourists to use for the long term.

Padula said some ideas they mentioned include a tourist area for brochures, a shop for souvenirs, or an area to learn history. Nevertheless, they believe once the project is complete, it’ll be more eye-catching and much of an asset to the county.

“The sky is the limit with ideas of what we can actually do. We like to have it be open in some way,” Padula said. “You know so people can come here and buy souvenirs, learn about the history. It’s more utilized as a tourist destination for people traveling through, and also people here in the community want to know more about the building.”

The goal is to have the project done by this summer. Trenger added this could mean having it completed by the annual county fair. But they’re looking forward to tackling the project.

“I think it’s huge for our entire class to take on something so big and so bold,” Trenger said. “To get it done in a matter of months. So I’m excited to see where this goes.”

Get daily updates on local news, weather and sports by signing up for the WTAJ Newsletter

Donations can be made to their Go Fund Me page.

You can also write a check to the Bedford County Chamber Education Foundation (203 S Juliana St, Bedford, PA 15522) making it out to “Leadership Bedford County.”