Stomping Grounds provides hub for community gatherings
Justin Eich and his family have lived in Hartford for almost 20 years, and in that time, they’ve contributed quite a bit to the growing community.
Eich is president of the Hartford Area Development Foundation, and he operates several local businesses with his wife, Robin—an attorney with offices in both Hartford and Parker.
Eich has a background in auto body mechanics, but he also owns and manages the Vista Crossing apartments and commercial spaces, operates a snow removal business, and of course, runs Stomping Grounds—Hartford’s first coffeehouse.
The Eichs have owned the Vista Crossing property, where Stomping Grounds is located, since 2006. Justin Eich says the idea for a coffeehouse had been on his mind for years before they opened.
“We were waiting for Hartford to grow, with this project in mind,” he said. “We dug a hole for the footings back in 2014 because we thought the area was ready for that relaxed atmosphere, where people could gather, study, or have meetings.”
Stomping Grounds opened in 2017 and has since become a hub for community gatherings, thanks in large part to Eich’s commitment to giving back. From participation in fundraising events to special discounts for students and teachers, as well as free drip coffee for law enforcement, Eich is always looking for opportunities to serve the Hartford community.
What’s on the menu?
When it comes to food, Stomping Grounds focuses on a variety of lighter options to provide an alternative to burgers and bar food. The menu includes paninis, soups, salads, breakfast sandwiches, pastries, and smoothies, as well as a full array of coffee, espresso, and tea.
Eich sources high quality ingredients, including local favorites like SDSU ice cream and coffee beans from Coffea Roasterie. In fact, he spent time at Coffea’s training facility where he learned cupping techniques from their team of roasters and coffee gurus.
There’s always something new on the menu, and Eich tries to provide healthier options as well, including quinoa and rice bowls, parfaits, and protein balls. Customers can add Advocare protein to their smoothies, and Eich says the Peanut Butter Dream is a consistent customer favorite. It features Advocare’s vanilla protein packet, peanut butter, banana, and crushed ice. Stomping Grounds also offers dairy-free milk alternatives for its drinks, including almond and coconut milk.
Additionally, Stomping Grounds has options to make your morning coffee run or daily lunch break extra convenient, including a drive-thru and online ordering. Customers can order and pay online, and then simply drive through or stop inside to pick up their order, whether it’s coffee or a full meal.
The Hartford community has turned Stomping Grounds into a popular spot for Bible studies, book clubs, meetings, and students. The back room and outdoor patio can be reserved at no charge for meetings or parties. In the future, Eich says he hopes to take on some catering opportunities—he’s had a few requests already from large groups.
Beyond his regular offerings, Eich makes a point to create special menu items throughout the seasons, whether it’s hot apple cider in the fall, pies at Thanksgiving and Christmas, or brats in the summer. During school conferences, Eich has delivered orders of cinnamon rolls, and at Christmas time, he’s dropped off goodie trays to show appreciation for West Central’s teachers.
Ultimately, Stomping Grounds has become a hub for Hartford area residents, owned and operated by a family that cares deeply for their community. Whether you’re on-the-go or looking for a place to sit and stay awhile, Stomping Grounds has something for everyone.
Monday - Friday: 6:30 a.m. to 6 p.m
Saturday: 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
700 N. Vandemark Ave Suite 110
Hartford, South Dakota 57033