The old Papillion Times publishing building in downtown Papillion is undergoing renovations. The landmark is set to become the TriPointe Coffee House within the next few weeks.
The coffee house will be a place where customers can sit and relax, occasionally enjoy some musical entertainment, purchase local artwork or even hold business meetings, all while enjoying a cup of locally roasted coffee.
“Our heart is just to be a service to this community and pull people together,” the Rev. Chris Evenson said.
Evenson’s church, TriPointe Baptist Church of Omaha, took part in establishing the business, though the shop will stand on its own once completed.
Evenson said the idea to open the coffee shop came from a desire to serve the community, then it grew into a business plan.
He said the church followed Papillion City Council meetings for nearly two years and saw the desire of the city to revitalize the downtown area into a place where residents and people from outside the area can come to hang out, relax and enjoy the community.
The church had met with Mayor David Black and City Administrator Dan Hoines. Evenson said they expressed a desire for a sit-down establishment such as this.
“There is a need for family-owned businesses, restaurants, the idea where people can come together to meet,” Black said.
“A quaint, small coffee house where people can relax, meet over a cup of coffee and maybe listen to some music — I think that fulfills a need.”
“You can get coffee here (in Papillion), but you can’t sit down and enjoy the place,” Evenson said.
However, Evenson ultimately credited the possibility of the coffee shop to God.
“To be real honest, God just wanted us here. I don’t know why, but he wants us to serve here.”
In hopes of better serving the community, the coffee shop will support local businesses and individuals. For example, all coffee will be roasted by the Bean Smith in La Vista.
The coffee house will also allow local artists and photographers to display and sell their work within the cafe space and plans to host monthly concerts for local musicians.
“We’re very interested in the arts,” Evenson said.
Additionally, the space is split into two areas, one of which will serve as the cafe, with the other space open for reservations for private meetings or gatherings.
The shop plans to have a full coffee bar, offering traditional espresso drinks as well as fruit smoothies and pastries. It also is exploring options to serve gluten-free products, something Evenson said is important as many people struggle to find a gluten-free place to enjoy.
As the coffee shop gets close to finished, plans are being made to proudly display the history of the building in the town.
Currently, one of the Times’ printing presses — which was made in 1885 — still remains in the basement, showing rust and signs of old age as well as water damage from the 1959 Papio Creek flood.
Workers also discovered original films of past photographs, which the shop plans to print and display across the cafe.
“We’re excited to get all this to a museum possibly and letting people see Papillion’s history,” Evenson said.
Evenson also said the Papillion Historical Society is in the process of requesting the land owner for rights to the film and the press machine.
The shop’s goal is to open before Papillion Days, which begins June 13.
“We want to have the doors open and welcoming the community,” he said.