News & Events
The local business of Community First Bank, Michelle's, offers a cozy ambiance for any coffee or tea drinker. The Café has been in business since 1994, after its conversion from a hardware store. It went through various names: Mitchel's, Kiva Han, and Michelle's. Café owners, Ann Pyle and Nancy Landes, took over the business in 2000.
The decision to take over Michelle's fell into place for them both. Ann cooked lunches for the previous owners and Nancy was burnt out in her nursing field. The collaboration of the two sisters is a success. The motif was designed by the previous owners, who bought antiques and architectural features from auctions and estate sales from New York. The teapot and teacup chandeliers were designed by an artist. The only original feature is the hardwood floor and tin ceiling. All of this provides a nice warm atmosphere for their customers.
Other than having a coffee or tea made from one of their friendly Baristas, one can enjoy a quiche with soup or a scone to compliment his or her hot beverage. They also offer a variety of desserts and ice cream. The Café also displays local art and periodically live entertainment. Ann and Nancy work closely with Clarion University's art and English professors to offer culture within their walls. The only obstacles they encounter are the new businesses on campus, the declining economy, local industries shutting down and the University not working with them for catering opportunities. Michelle's has held its own and has a loyal customer base in spite of the obstacles.
When asked what they like most about banking with Community First Bank, Ann and Nancy immediately stated that the bank is accessible to them on Main Street and Community First is a hometown bank focusing on community. They stated this about the bank personalizing to their needs, "When we had a problem with our statements, Deb Benetti helped us with our situation and got us what we needed." They believe that Community First Bank offers a unique banking experience.
Well Ann and Nancy, it is our pleasure to serve the small businesses of Clarion County, and we love serving those who serve our community! Thank you for banking with us. We encourage everyone to stop by and check out such a unique staple in the Clarion market. Tell them Community First Bank sent you!
Voted 2016 Best Bank
Thank you to our customers and the readers of The Courier Express and the Tri-County Sunday for voting Community First Bank the Best Bank of 2016! We value your confidence and look forward to another year of providing one-on-one personalized customer service.
Come experience real community banking at one of our local branches and see the Community First difference.
In March of this year sixty-six municipalities throughout Pennsylvania submitted applications for inclusion into the Blueprint Communities training program. From this list of applicants only six towns were chosen.
The Blueprint Communities Initiative is sponsored by the Federal Home Loan Bank of Pittsburgh, the Penn State Extension and administered through the Downtown Center in Harrisburg. Their mission is to serve as a catalyst to revive older communities and neighborhoods by building strong local leadership skills, collaboration efforts and development capacities. It also encourages sound planning which includes a clear vision for community improvements and a five-year implementation approach.
Community First Bank is pleased to announce that two communities, sponsored by the bank, were among those selected to participate: Reynoldsville and Clarion.
Each community is represented by a core team that is attending extensive training sessions through January of 2015. The skills they learn and training they receive will be shared with local leaders, organizations and interested citizens of their respective communities as the expanded version of their revitalization projects are put into play. The completion of the training program will serve as a catalyst for private and public funding, low-interest loans and grant opportunities.
In contrast to other revitalization efforts, the Blueprint Communities Initiative centers on a more holistic approach to redevelopment. Focusing on more than just a face-lift for the town, issues that engage residents of all ages, develop new businesses and industries and create economic sustainability are all addressed in the plan.
Community First Bank applauds the efforts of the Reynoldsville and Clarion Blueprint Communities teams and their commitment to put their communities first.