Having been in downtown Centralia for nearly a decade, The Station, a coffee bar and bistro, is now owned by the Lewis County Coffee Company.
The Station, formerly owned by the DeVaul family, is the seventh shop owned by the company, which currently has five drive-thru locations and one at the Providence Centralia Hospital.
The Chronicle sat down with the family co-owners of Lewis County Coffee Company, Samantha Magnuson and Angie Twining, to talk about why they chose to buy The Station and their future plans for the coffee shop.
“It’s been here since 2012. It was Brownstone Coffee for a couple of years then it’s been The Station since 2013 or 2014. It was (owned by) a local family that has other businesses in town and they approached us and we made a deal,” Magnuson said.
Despite the ownership transfer, Magnuson said they decided to keep the name the same as it is already established. They chose to buy The Station to establish a bigger footprint in Centralia.
“We’re strong in Chehalis because that’s where the offices are and where most of us reside, but this gave us a great way to participate in Centralia, which has cool history and great old buildings,” Magnuson said. “That’s the reason why we kept the name The Station. The train station is literally behind us and a block over, so we wanted to pay homage to that name and create a brand that is powered by Lewis County Coffee. You’ve got all the same things you get at the drive-thru, but it’s going to have more.”
For starters, they have chosen to keep the paninis previously offered by the last owners. Magnuson added that there are ongoing discussions about expanding the kitchen’s menu, but if those changes are made, they won’t appear until next year.
Other changes being planned revolve around renovations, including adding more power outlets and putting up a glass wall in The Station’s rear balcony area to make it more of a conference room for people to use for meetings.
“It won’t be cut off visually from the rest of the shop but it will make it quieter up here,” Magnuson said.
Additionally, the front balcony area will also be partitioned off to allow people who visit The Station to work remotely a bit more privacy.
“We’re gonna make work stations in each window so people who work from home can have a space outside of home to actually get something done, a comfortable spot,” said Twining. “We’ve noticed a lot of people come here with their laptops and they’re working from home, especially by the windows. Everyone loves those windows.”
“If you have kids at home or pets at home and you just need that separation, but you still work from home, it’s nice to have a place you can call your second little office space. It isn’t 8 to 5, Monday through Friday, but it gives you a break and you can have a nice coffee and enjoy a snack and get something done,” Magnuson added.
The end goal of their renovations is not only to make The Station more friendly to people working remotely, but to also give it more of a high-end kitchen vibe, according to Magnuson. That will be accomplished not only through possible new menu additions but by using high quality ingredients, she said.
With as big as Lewis County Coffee Company has already grown, Twining said The Station, with all of its space, would allow them and their staff to get to know one another better.
“We haven’t had a space where we could get all 60 baristas together. It’ll be nice for all of us to get to know each other again because sometimes you don’t realize that somebody works in Tower at Highway 12, so (it will be nice) just for the staff to have a lot more team bonding and we like to be really involved with the staff too,” Twining said.
She added that all five baristas who worked at The Station before they took over as owners still remain on staff, and the shop is now managed by one of their own employees who they promoted, Cheyenne Samford.
Additionally, they hope to be able host performances by local artists and musicians in The Station, and are currently in full gear getting The Station ready for Christmas by repainting and decorating the walls and finishing decorations on a Christmas Tree currently in the center of the shop.
“The Tractor Parade is Dec. 10, which is huge for downtown. We have our 15-foot Christmas tree, which will be fully decorated and we'll have free Santa photos that day in one of the decorated windows from noon to 5:30 p.m. We’re also giving away a trip for two to Vegas that day,” Magnuson said.
She said no purchase is necessary to enter in the Las Vegas trip raffle, but if you want to participate you must show up in-person on Dec. 10 to enter in the drawing.
Twining added they are planning to have a chili dog bar available for dinner that night as well so people could have chili dogs or bowls of chili to walk around downtown with while watching the Tractor Parade.
The Station is located in downtown Centralia at 120 S. Tower Ave. Follow the businesses — Lewis County Coffee Company and The Station — to learn more.