Starbucks opens in Carson City

The opening of Starbucks Coffee on North Carson Street brings a national player into the increasingly crowded local java market.

Other recent additions include Kupps Coffee in front of Gottschalk's on South Carson, which opened July 15, and Barista Bros. at North Carson Street, open since early May.

Starbucks operates company-owned stores throughout the country as well as internationally, including three in the Reno-Sparks area. The Carson store, 3228 North Carson Street, is part of the retail expansion at the south end of the Kmart shopping center. It opened Monday.

A drive-up window complements inside and outside seating at the new restaurant.

"Carson City is definitely an area that Starbucks has wanted to expand into," Starbucks spokeswoman Shauna Hendricks said Tuesday.

About 80 percent of the new store's 20 employees were recruited from Carson City, said Chris Moore. Moore, who runs the South Lake Tahoe Starbucks, said he is managing the Carson store for the first few months while the permanent manager is being trained in Sparks.

"We had no trouble recruiting here. We had an abundancy, a plethora of qualified applicants," said Moore. A couple of the staffers did transfer from other Starbucks stores, he said.

Besides varieties of espressos, cappuccinos and hot coffee concoctions, Starbucks offers its trademark Frappuccino blended coffee beverage and Tiazzi tea and fruit juice blends. Whole coffee beans, packaged tea, brewing equipment, biscotti and other desserts are also available.

Starbucks initially is open 6 a.m.-8 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays and 6 a.m.-9 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. Those hours very well could be expanded once the initial shakedown is over, Hendricks said.

A grand opening celebration is planned at Starbucks on Saturday, Sept. 16, she said. A local nonprofit organization will be selected to receive all the day's proceeds, she said. Music and other festivities are also planned.

Meanwhile, Kupps Coffee has expanded it hours of business, owner Jim West said Tuesday. The drive-up restaurant had run 6 a.m.-3 p.m. during its first six weeks, but now stays open until 7 p.m.

West said its concept of "Lunch in a Kupp" has been well-received, with 20-30 of the wrapped sandwiches packaged in cups being ordered a day.

Kupps has four employees and is looking for another, West said.

He said the business is sponsoring a soccer team of 9 10-year-old girls, the Liberties. And Kupps is the only Carson City location taking donations for KOH talk radio host Rusty Humphries' fund-raising effort for the national World War II memorial project.

"Humphries heard that the State Legislature planned to donate $21,000 to the memorial fund, but he feels that's something individuals should do, not government," West said. "So Kupps has donated $500, my dad has matched it with $500 and he's going to get the company on whose board he sits to donate $500.

"There's $1,500 and we're accepting $1 donations. Donors can put the name of a veteran on a flag here in memorium."

The Carson City Kupps is the prototype for what West and his brother and co-owner Phil hopes will be a successful franchise.

"I was up scouting possible locations in Reno and Sparks today. It's not easy because land has become pretty scarce, but I anticipate we'll have a location there by the first quarter of 2001," West said.

"We're also looking at Minden - the car counts and demographics are good for us there, too."

Coffee Options in Carson City

Barista Brothers 1825 N. Carson St.

Brainy Bean 885 East Musser St., ground floor

Capital Blends 2050 N. Carson St.

Chocolate Valley 1000 N. Carson St.

Espresso To Go 3667 S. Carson St.

Java Joe's 319 N. Carson St. and 4306 S. Carson St.

Kupps Coffee 1449 S. Carson St.

Slot World 3879 Hwy. 50 E.

Starbucks 3228 N. Carson St.

Tudor Cottage 202 N. Curry St.


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