Over the weekend, my significant other and I had a serious craving for barbeque. Thankfully, a friend came through in the clutch and suggested Barrett's Smoke House.

Now, this isn't an advertisement for Barrett's Smoke House although, it was absolutely delicious and I will be back. However, I noticed something very unique outside of their building. It's a vending machine filled with meat:

TSM/ Chelsea Rose
TSM/ Chelsea Rose

Inside, there were steaks, sausages, and more all priced at about $10 to $15 that you can buy whenever you'd like. Genius! Especially, if you're a person who works odd hours that perhaps don't line up with regular business hours. It works out for the customer and, it makes a bit of extra money for the business. Win, win.

So, with that in mind, here are 5 Kalamazoo area businesses I wish had a 24/7 vending machine:

*note: none of these businesses have paid me. I just work weird hours and love convenience. Also, these are in no particular order*

1. Cherri's Chocol'art 

Since I'm a chocoholic, this one shouldn't be a surprise. Cherri's Chocol'art is located in downtown Kalamazoo and combines incredible artwork with delicious chocolate. As seen above, their creations are wonderful just to admire. However, they also make marshmallows in-house. As the cooler weather approaches, you better believe I'd be snagging those out of a vending machine to chuck into my coffee. See all of their goodies by following them on Facebook.

2. This is a Bookstore & Bookbug 

As much as I love supporting local businesses, I actually have to limit the number of times I visit This is a Bookstore because I have no self-control when it comes to books. Do I have a giant pile of 'to be read' books sitting at home? Yes. Will I buy new books every time I walk through their doors? Also, yes. But, if they had a vending machine outside with new or even used books they're trying to clear from their inventory I would be ALL over it. Side note: they have an adorable little cafe inside their store should you need a boost of caffeine while browsing. Find them online or on Facebook.

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3. The Victorian Bakery 

This also feels like an obvious one to anyone who knows me. Even if it was just their croissants, I would be spending all of my money at that vending machine. But, they have so much more than just croissants. From their cakes to loaves of bread to quiches...they have it all. See more on their website or Facebook page.

4. PFC Natural Grocery & Deli 

Why? Because there's always something I'm forgetting at the store. Yes, Meijer and Walmart are always an option for shopping. But, I'd rather give my money to a locally owned store instead. Granted, PFC is open from 8 am to 8 pm every day so, the likelihood of my needing a vending machine for their products is low. But, still, it'd be nice! PFC is a co-op owned by the community. If you'd like to learn more, find their website here or follow them on Facebook.

5. La Familia Cafe 

Specifically, for the birria tacos. If you haven't had them, put them on your list immediately. Now, I don't know how anyone would pull off selling birria tacos in a vending machine without it being a giant mess but, I would buy them! La Familia Cafe is located in downtown Kalamazoo and serves a large variety of authentic Mexican dishes. Find their menu on their website or follow them on Facebook.

There are a TON of locally owned businesses in the Kalamazoo area. Many of them have products that I would buy if they sold them in a vending machine. I simply listed the first five that came to mind.

But, come on, how great would it be to be able to snag a chocolate croissant whenever you want or a quick taco when you're walking around downtown Kalamazoo? It sounds like a dream, really. In fact, there is a 24-hour pizza vending machine in Michigan. You'll just have to drive to Jackson:

Fall is here and if you're awaiting the arrival of those gorgeous Fall colors, you're not alone. Want to plan to visit the most picturesque spots around Kalamazoo? Check this out:

10 Spots In Kalamazoo With The Best Fall Colors

Nature Preserves, Trails, and Parks in Greater Kalamazoo with great scenery, amazing nature, and an amazing array of fall colors!

To Heck With Amazon! Shop These 6 Independent SW Michigan Bookstores Instead

Look, we all know how much money Jeff Bezos has. So, instead of giving him more, let's support our locally owned bookshops instead!

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