Get your Good Vibes – it’s more than just really great coffee!

Good Vibes owner, Tina Kerr with daughter, Michaela Kerr tell us about Good Vibes coffee. Positive, inspiring and amazing this mother-daughter duo will serve you the best coffee and good vibes! (Coupon to try their spectacular coffee is at bottom of post.)


It was just about 9.30am on a Tuesday morning when I walked to Ludlam Park from Massey Street in Woburn, Lower Hutt. Beneath the large towering pohutukawa trees I felt small but safe. I knew I added to their presence. Just being there I was part of the ecosystem. Their branches that seemed to stretch out for miles in the air welcomed me, invited me, into their park.

{NOTE: Downloadable Coupon for coffee is at bottom of post! Interested in arranging Good Vibes at your function? Tina Kerr’s contact details below.}

Between the shadows of the leaves, the sun warmed me – it kissed me with its rays. The tuis sang and croaked their loud birdsong. Their song resonated then perched in the innermost parts of my ears with a message – one I couldn’t quite make out.

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Between the shadows of the pohutukawas…

And within this small ecosystem, Good Vibes consciously made and served up coffees to the long line of customers already there – an especially long line for only being their seventh day in the park. Small blue and red wrought-iron chairs prettily lined the coffee-van. They seemed proud of their presence, their contribution to the Good Vibes.

I approached the slick black van with chrome ‘Good Vibes’ lettering and mandala design dusted in rainbow colours.

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The slick ‘Good Vibes’ van

Tina greets me.

‘Hi! I’m Tina. I’ll give you a hug, I’m a hugger.’

‘Yup, Good Vibes,’ I think to myself. I was already in a trance.

Michaela, her daughter, warmly welcomes me into their proud, positive space.

‘What kind of coffee do you like?’ (I asked for a soy chai latte – sorry coffee Huttonians, I don’t drink coffee, but I do like Good Vibes).

Their Kiwiana cups

I sit on one of the small wrought iron chairs closest to a smaller pohutukawa tree – just a baby, but still as welcoming as the big ones.

Coffee and wrought iron

Tina sits across from me while Michaela finishes serving customers.

Meet: Tina Kerr

Owner of Good Vibes Coffee and Barista.

Favourite coffee: Regular latte with an extra shot of coffee

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Tina Kerr, owner/barista of Good Vibes

Meet: Michaela Kerr

Good Vibes Coffee barista extraordinaire (daughter of the duo)

Favourite coffee: Latte or flat white

Tina Kerr (left) and Michaela Kerr (right)

Me: ‘What’s your background?’

Tina tells me how she grew up in Featherston with her two older brothers. She had a wholesome grassroots lifestyle with lots of outdoors and common sense.

‘It was an awesome place to grow up; I had a horse. We’d go bike riding at night and make tree forts in the forest.’

And before the coffee van, Tina worked at a cafe in Maungaraki for four years. She dreamt of having her own coffee van, but every time she thought about it she’d get anxious – it felt too out of her comfort zone.

Then one day she just thought, ‘Actually, I can do this.’ She decided to let go of her fear and pursued her dream.

With a lot of support from her partner who had the same positive mindset, they looked around for just the right coffee van that Tina could see herself driving around in.

And when her dream-van (the van she currently has) first appeared for sale on TradeMe, she was outbid by another buyer.

‘Delicious’ coffee van

‘A lady in Auckland offered a higher price for it – she got it. I felt like my dreams were shattered at the time. I thought, ‘That was the perfect one’.’

But Tina kept putting out those Good vibes, and eight months later when the same van popped back up on the market she bought it.

Me: ‘What inspired the Good Vibes name?’

‘I used to be quite shy and insecure – I wasn’t very good around people. But after working with the community at the cafe, and opening myself up, I began to see life as so frickin’ beautiful!

‘I started telling customers, ‘Good vibes! Good vibes!’

The name ‘Good Vibes’ and the van’s artwork resembles the darkness and coming into the light, Tina tells me.

‘Isn’t she beautiful [asked Tina about her van]? She’s so delicious!’

‘Good Vibes is all about loving life and meeting so many beautiful people. It’s about counting your blessings every day. We’re so fortunate here in New Zealand. Good Vibes is all about loving the simple things in life really.

‘People would come to me at the cafe, and they would talk to me about stuff. And if I would see someone who was sad, I would just go and give them a hug. If I could make someone’s day, it would make my day; and I just thought, ‘Man the people out in the flat need more positive love and good vibes’ – without sounding corny,’ Tina tells me.

Michaela chimes in, ‘People would come in [to the cafe], not feeling their greatest. They would have a conversation with mum because she is a really happy bubbly person; and would walk out with a smile, feeling a lot better – they would come back for their daily dose of mum’s good vibes.’

And just like that we all stop talking and watch a monarch butterfly flutter towards us. It delicately lands on a blue chair.

‘See another little blessing!’ Tina says. ‘Look at that!’

‘Yes, so I’m just a small-town girl from Featherston, young mum at 17. I just thought, ‘You just gotta do something with your life; get out of your comfort zone.’

Me: ‘Is this business with your daughter?’

Working with her daughter is just the icing on the cake when it comes to Good Vibes. Tina has employed Michaela to work alongside her, help her run the coffee van.

But working together isn’t new to them. They’ve been working together for four years.

‘She started at the cafe first, and a week after being there she managed to get me a job. I just started off doing dishes and cleaning after school. And then I would work the weekends and the holidays, ‘says Michaela.

And when she finished school she started working at the cafe full time.

‘We just worked awesome together – we were like the ‘A-Team,’ says Tina.

When the thought of running a coffee van crossed both their minds it seemed like a natural fit.

‘Good vibes girl!’ Tina tells me.

‘We’re nice and new and fresh. And we’ve had an awesome response from the area too. People from all over the area have come and welcomed us telling us how they’re so happy we’re here,’ says Tina.

‘They’ve been really nice, and have introduced themselves as well,’ Michaela says. ‘Quite a few people walk past here, and we have dog treats for peoples’ dogs when they visit.’

More people show up for their daily dose of good vibes as we talk, even one person who has driven from Maungaraki each of the seven days they’ve been at Ludlam Park.

Tina greets more people and has to leave to help Michaela serve a small group on their smoko break.

Our interview naturally ends. I observe the influx of people leaving, coffees in hand, smiles on faces, and know now that Tina and her daughter are here to give so much more than coffee. They are here to pass on a positive mindset.

As I leave I can’t help but feel that good vibes are the reason for the tuis boisterous singing and croaking – so loudly on that beautiful sunny morning. And I finally understand their message still echoing in my ears: ‘Enjoy life and make the most of it – get your good vibes!’

Tree swing, waiting…


Get your awesomely positive Good Vibes from 7am to 4pm Monday to Friday at Ludlam Park.

If you’re running a function, you can contact Tina about bringing Good Vibes to your function.

Contact Tina on Facebook, @goodvibescoffee or phone: 022 068 0193.


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Get your Good Vibes coffee




Click here to download coupon