You know how it is: You walk into a coffee shop, and suddenly you feel you should be wearing a black turtleneck and reading Proust. Coffee shops have an undeniable literary cachet, and now you can help get the next generation of readers started on the path to literary hipness -- while drinking coffee. Sometimes the stars really do align.
Page Ahead, a statewide children's literacy program, is joining with several local purveyors of caffeine to collect 1,000 new children's books during the month of August, and to get those books into kids' hands when school opens in September.
To help the "DOUBLE SHOT OF LITERACY" BOOK DRIVE, drop off a NEW children's book at one of these participating coffee shops: Common Grounds (1707 W. Northwest Blvd.), The Daily Grind Uptown (Paulsen Center, 421 W. Riverside Ave.), The District (917 W. Broadway Ave.), Dutch Brothers (three locations), Rocket Bakery (six locations), The Service Station (9315 N. Nevada St.), The Shop (924 S. Perry St.), Starbucks (22 locations), and Thomas Hammer (five locations). Several of the shops offer discounts or incentives for your donations, so donate often and take full advantage of the resulting buzz.
-- ANN M. COLFORD
FESTIVAL Eat, Shop, Listen
Coeur d'Alene is a great place to be on any given summer weekend, but the place goes over the top this week. Not only is Art on the Green happening on the grounds of North Idaho College (see page 67), but the 20th annual TASTE OF THE COEUR D'ALENES unfolds nearby in Coeur d'Alene City Park. More than 20 food vendors, some local and some just passing through, will set up in the park, along with dozens of artisans' booths. There's entertainment throughout the weekend at the park's bandstand, right beside the city beach, so it's a marvelous opportunity to snag some good food and find a place to hang out for a lazy summer day.
--ANN M. COLFORD
Taste of the Coeur d'Alenes, at City Park in Coeur d'Alene, runs Fri-Sat Aug. 3-4 from 10 am-8:30 pm, Sun Aug. 5 from 10 am-6 pm. Free admission. Call (208) 667-9346.
SHOPS Fizzy Evidence
Like a newly refurbished 1953 Mercury with baby moon hubcaps, the POP SHOPPE springs into Spokane, a new addition to an old favorite. Memories of cold soda in glass bottles with pop tops and flavors like Lime Ricky and Grape Nehi reverberate through the minds of those old enough to remember the original Pop Shoppe. The new store in the South Perry neighborhood just reopened following its closure in 1983. Sales manager David Dominick set up shop after he learned that the chain, originally from Canada, was beginning to bring back its stores.
Colors stripe the walls of the small store reflecting a wide variety of distinctly flavored, fuzzy liquids encased in 12-ounce bottles. Dominick sits at his register and trades out soda for cash. It seems Spokanites can't get enough of his soda. "It's been incredible," Dominick says. "Yesterday we had a $1,000 day. We had a $1,200 day [last] Saturday."
Dominick says people from Deer Park and Liberty Lake will drive in to get his pop for a couple of reasons. "Nostalgia. The Pop Shoppe is really embedded in the Spokane people. They remember it. They also want quality and variety."
The shop hasn't opened without controversy. Dominick's neighbors tipped off the Spokesman-Review about an incident on Nov. 2 where he was arrested and now faces a charge of indecent exposure. The paper then ran an article about the misdemeanor. Dominick describes the incident, which he says occurred on his own property: "I was drunk and I got locked out of my house. I relieved myself, and [the neighbors] called the cops."
Dominick's not worried that the publicity will affect his thriving business. "I think if anything it will make me more popular. I shouldn't have done that, and I'm sorry, but I don't know what else to say."
The pop seller plans to continue to handpick each variety of soda. The flavors he promises are ever changing and come from all over the world. Flavors run the gamut -- including strawberry, pineapple and old-fashioned root beer -- although his inventory isn't quite the soda pop version of Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans. He swears all of his pop tastes good.
The Pop Shoppe, 1002 S. Perry St., is open Tue-Sat 10 am-7 pm, Sun noon-5 pm. Call 879-0767.