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Website discusses the future of Dandelion Communitea Café

August 4, 2014
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Tonight, Julie Norris, founder of the beloved Dandelion Communitea Café, posted up a new website called #resolutionnotdissolution. In it, she goes public about a legal dispute she’s been engaged in with Chris Blanc, a co-owner of the cafe who filed to have the company dissolved earlier this year due to what court documents say were management issues.

Norris says on the website that she wants to resolve the situation rather than dissolve the company (which she says could potentially put Dandelion out of business). The two go to mediation to discuss the situation further on Aug. 19, according to the statements on the website, and Norris promises to keep loyal Dandelion fans and friends up to date by posting the legal documents on the site as the case develops.

Here at the Weekly, we’ve heard some of the rumblings about the dispute, but we haven’t heard many details. We do know one thing: It would be a tragedy if yet another Best of Orlando winner went out of business after we honored them. Is there a Best of Orlando curse? Why can’t everyone just get along? Who knows. But we do hope Julie and co. keep serving up that magical chick pea mash that wins our Best Hummus category every year.

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  • Nina

    I hate to disregard something someone obviously spent so long putting together, but this is ridiculous. Dandy and its hummus aren’t going anywhere.

  • Jarett Droolin

    Julie Norris doesn’t actually do any work at Dandelion. She has been absent on the longest maternity leave ever for the past 4 years. She hasn’t been on the property without a company paid OPD officer in almost two months. She has told the workers she does not help out at the cafe because she refuses to work a “$10 an hour job.” Most employees at Dandelion make barely over minimum wage. Many workers, including myself, went on a one day strike when Juile Norris hired a uniformed OPD officer to protect her because HER BOYFRIEND PUNCHED CHRIS BLANC. That makes sense, right? As for Julie Norris implying that Dandelion may close because of the dissolution, she has done nothing but make false and fraudulent accusations, drawing out the dissolution for almost a year now in court and costing Dandelion thousands upon
    thousands of dollars. I encourage everyone to come to Dandelion and speak to the people that actually work there to find out what is really going on. We all have very solid oppinions about and are willing to share. Love you, Orlando. Love, “the NRA hat guy.”

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  • Carly Selester

    There bland hummus needs to go

  • Tiggy

    I feel sensationalized and hurt right now

  • OWeditor

    Thanks — we are going to have a reporter follow up with a story, and we’ll tell him to swing by and talk to employees. Thank you.

  • Jason

    I am delighted to see that Jarrett is encouraging people to stop by and ask “why is Chris the self-proclaimed protector of Dandelions filing a lawsuit to dissolve the very company he is
    protecting?” It seems the ugly truth is that Chris is using his self imposed image as the protector of Dandelions to conceal his real objective which is to will his power to exile anyone who opposes his actions as he steals the company for himself. During his hostile takeover Chris and his current employees have ripped apart families, friendships, refused service to customers who are friendly with Julie and forced all the amazing former Dandelion employees that support Julie to quite.

    It is a tragedy that Chris the leader of Orlando’s shining example of a socially conscience company has left so MANY in our community dealing with emotional distress, pain and suffering. Personally I don’t think Dandelions will survive all the current civil and corporate lawsuits as well as the pending lawsuits against the current employees and Chris for creating a hostile workplace.

  • Jarett Droolin

    Jason, you are extremely mistaken. You need to come talk to me at Dandelion. You are extremely misinformed. Please come to Dandelion and learn the truth from people that are living this and please stop your uninformed rants on public forums. Thanks.

  • Jason

    I am not mistaken. Your company’s landlords are friends of mine and I have heard their story. I have personally spoken to 8 former Dandelion employees who were pushed out. A very dear friend is filing a lawsuit against Chris next month and I have read the aggressive and offensive emails from Chris. I know 2 customers personally that were refused service by Chris. I have read the court documents. I have spoken to Julie. I know your x-bookkeeper. I know 3 of your food vendors. I know both of the former uncompensated Dandelion employees that are currently suing Dandelion’s. I know the attorney that is currently preparing to file a lawsuit against you and the other employees in the near future for your part in the hostile takeover. I think I know enough…

  • Jarett Droolin

    Lol. I have worked at Dandelion for 6 years. Hostile take over? That’s funny, never heard about it. I can’t believe you still can’t spell my name right after 6 years, Julie. Orlando Weekly, I’m being threatened by Jason(Julie Norris). Please remove their posts.

  • Christina Lucero

    How dare you Jason (Julie Norris) speak ill of Chris. Morale is higher than ever. He/we work hard to keep to keep this amazing establishment going. You needing a hired gun makes me laugh.

  • Jason

    Good deflection. Dave Plotkin at the weekly knows me. I am the Asian American guy that Chris refused to serve because I know Julie. I would love to give my side of the story to the weekly. I can also arrange a meeting with the above mentioned people as well.

  • Jarett Droolin

    I’m at Dandelion Mon-Sat 9-4. Come on by. We’ve never refused you service and will never. Lunch is on me. Scoot on over.

  • Dave Plotkin

    Hahaha. No. Whoever you are, you certainly don’t need to involve me. If we’ve met and I forgot, my apologies. I would have told you how odd and improbable it sounds that anyone has been refused service at Dandelion, no matter who is working.

  • ryanfromdeland

    you need to go, as does your spelling

  • Jarett Droolin

    Seems like Plotkin has no idea who you are. I beg to agrue that the rest of everything you said is false. My invitation still stands, “Jason.” I would also like to amend a previous comment. We have turned away a few people. An associate of Julie Norris was turned away because she informed the front of house staff that if they don’t agree with Julie they should quit and get a job at McDonald’s. Three other patrons are refused service because they are claiming to be owners of Dandelion. In my six years of service to Dandelion I have only been informed of two owners, Chris and Julie. Another patron was denied service by myself because he walked into the cafe at 11am with a tall can of Bud Light, was obviously intoxicated and started to inappropriately flirt with female customers. I feel pretty good denying that person service.

  • Jarett Droolin

    Hey, Dave. Sorry to have you involved in this. We have denied a few people service and I mentioned those instances in a reply to “Jason.” Hope you are well and kicking ass at life.

  • Jesse

    H8rs need to spell check

  • Bill

    Hi Julie.. I mean Henry… I mean Jason (sorry I’m real bad with names). I just want to inform you that a “hostile takeover” is the exact opposite of a “civil suit”, which is what’s happening. But let’s talk about hostility for a moment. Who hired an armed police officer to watch over their own employees? (You know, those strange people that actually put money in your account?) And who’s boyfriend assaulted the other legitimate owner of Dandelion? (You know, that guy that actually works every single day of the week (literally) to make sure the employees and the business can survive?) Who is threatening their own employees, implicating employees of other businesses, and dragging as many outsiders as they can into their own battles? What do you (or Julie) do for the business, or the employees, by the way? Sit back and collect? Then preach and lie? Try caring about someone besides your self for once. I doubt half the people that work at dandelion know anything about you, other than your face, and the terrible lies you tell in the media. Your a joke, a sociopath, and a flat out terrible human being. It’s real sad that your name is tied to Dandelion. What do you have to do with it? Who would have the heart to hurt so many people and take away so many lively hoods? Get over your conspiracy theories, your self righteousness, and your delusions. All your doing is hurting people, and you won’t stop until all is fallen in your favor. Your doing a disservice to Dandelion, WPRK, The Orlando Weekly, your employees, your customers, and your community. I personally have no affiliation with Dandelion, but i can’t stand to watch somebody run around, with absolute disregard for everyone around them, and do their best to cripple a thriving business for the sake of their own gain. You suck Julie Norris. JULIE NORRIS SUCKS!! Pass it on.

  • Ryanfromdeland

    As a former employee, I’ll say with great certainty that Chris is easily one of the most hardworking and fair people I’ve ever worked for, and THAT is a thankless job. Day-in, day-out he’s there connecting all the little pieces. I accidentally got locked in a garage once and he left to come save me and would hardly even accept a thanks in return. On long periods of absence (read: my band was on tour) he’d even take my check to my bank for me and deposit it. Seriously one of the kindest people I’ve ever met. Julie on the other hand thought my name was Kevin (there was also no employee named Kevin) for the first year I worked there, and even famously called a number of the hispanic employees “jose.” At best she’s an eat-pray-love airhead, but the facts are now starting to paint her as a more calculatedly manipulative person. Best wishes to the cafe, may you continue to grow and improve as you have since Chris took the reins. If this was a fair world, you’d all never have to deal with this, but I know you’ll win it in the end. Julie, if you remember me, I think you’re a phony.

  • Ralph

    Julie is a capitalist, selfish, litter box sniffer. If Julie Norris demands on her radio show a $15 an hour minimum wage, why does she pay her employees $8 an hour?

  • Bill

    Oh, and I’ve noticed Julie likes to use her only child as a vessel for sympathy on the radio, and in publications, with scenarios like “I’m a single, struggling, hard working, business owning mother..”. Yes she partially owns a business that she stamps her name all over (and is trying her hardest to destroy). Yes she has a kid, and is single. Works though? Struggling? Far from it. It scares me how many times she’s left her child in the car, at just Dandelion, for customers to find. How often does that happen everywhere else? I would hardly call her a mother, besides the fact she gave birth once. Julie Norris is a child, and should maybe consider leaving herself in a hot car as she does to her own child. It’s a shame such irresponsible people get any public voice. Again, I am in no way affiliated with Dandelion. I’m just disgusted with Julies absolute disregard for other peoples lives when it compares to her own. She is a vile human being.

  • Jarett Droolin

    “Jason,” why won’t you have lunch with me? Am I not pretty enough?

  • Jarett Droolin

    “Jason,” I think we really need to meet. My life isn’t complete without you.

  • OWeditor

    We’ve had to go through and clean up some of the comments on this thread. No hateful speech, slander or personal attacks, please. Feel free to discuss, but please abide by these terms: http://orlandoweekly.com/about/postingpolicy

  • Nina

    It seems to me like this entire blog post is endorsing hateful speech, slander, and personal attacks. Vetting a website before posting about it to the public would have been nice.

  • OWeditor

    really, you see an endorsement there? i thought it was pretty neutral about the site content. i know little to nothing about this situation, beyond what’s being posted here, but since dandelion is a popular place, people might care. and i figured they could visit the website and maybe make up their own minds about what’s going on. the only thing i do feel strongly about is that it would suck if the place closed. but other than that …

  • Nina

    You’re reporting slanderous content as legitimate. This isn’t a website discussing Dandelion’s future, at least not truthfully. It’s a website trying to shock people into believing one side of the story. If people care about Dandelion they should care about getting the truth, and that’s not at all what you blogged about.

  • peachy peach

    I agree with Nina 100%. If the OW really wants to be a “neutral” news source, why don’t they write a story that addresses both sides of the issue instead of one that gives Ms. Norris yet another free platform to promote herself?

  • Tiggy

    Please dear Dandies stop feeding the trolls on here. End your involvement with people online who have no genuine love for you or our cafe.

  • athra

    Dude, I was thinking the same thing.

    Julie posted this website on August 3. A few days later she posted an addendum on the Public Documents Page:

    “Update: Before I could get to this, it was requested that I not release
    the remaining public documents on this website or the mediation would be
    off. I will temporarily agree to that until after the mediation, so you
    will have to wait until then or request them yourself from Orange
    County.”

    (this was NOT in the original launch website btw – as a legal scholar myself, I was especially eager to get my eyes on those documents she so proudly claimed to have
    posted)

    Sorry Julie, we go back a long time, and I can’t imagine things are easy for you right now, but seriously, you can’t release “remaining” documents until you release initial documents. There are NO public documents on your website. Anywhere. Period. You’ve posted ONE graphic image, in which you’ve spliced three sentences of a single document. This is in NO way “disclosing the public records involved in this case to increase transparency and put an end to false rumors,” as you would claim on your website.

    As a longtime supporter of the business, I wish if you were going to go to all this trouble and brew up all this hub bub in the community, that you would have at least given me a “clear understanding of the facts,” so myself and other “folks can focus on what we need most right now: RESOLUTION not DISSOLUTION.” But honestly, all I’ve been able to focus on is how UNCLEAR your fact presentation is. Your homepage wishes we could all “turn away from the smoke and mirror rumors.” Well if this is the case, why did you decide to start even more rumors by putting up a website claiming transparency, but not bother to post the public documents you kept proclaiming were on there?

    Dearest Editor, I think you could have bothered to do a little fact checking on this one…