Columbia, Ellis libraries joining the coffee shop trend

Thursday, September 18, 2003 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 10:54 p.m. CDT, Monday, July 21, 2008

Now open: the Bookmark Cafe in MU’s Ellis Library. And coming soon: a coffee cart at the Columbia Public Library.

Because of the widespread success of library coffee shops across the country, officials at Ellis Library decided to follow the lead. They approached Campus Dining Services to become next in line for a cafe.

New cafe named by MU student

Discussions about the cafe began during the 2003 winter semester and renovation began in mid-summer. Linda Sanders, manager of Applause! Coffee House in Memorial Union, is now also the manager of the Bookmark Cafe — a name suggested by MU student Amy Koksal.

Elliott Pope, marketing manager of the University Bookstore and Campus Dining Services, said the new addition will be nice for students, faculty and staff. “Speaking on behalf of Ellis Library and Campus Dining Services, we are very excited and we think it’s going to be very successful,” Pope said.

Patrons will be able to buy Starbucks drinks or satisfy their hunger with a Mrs. Goodcookie pastry snack. Students are welcome to sit at the new tables by the cafe shop to study. Outlets by the Bookmark Cafe offer Internet access for laptop computers.

Cafe is new alternative to Memorial Union

The grand opening begins at 9 a.m. today. MU Library Director Jim Cogswell has invited liaisons from each department, renovation and construction staff and several deans. Students are welcome to join the festivities at 10 a.m., although the coffee shop will usually open at 9:30 a.m.

Pope said the Bookmark Cafe hasn’t encountered any problems since its unofficial opening last month. “The excitement comes from seeing the numbers grow each week,” Pope said.

MU junior Abby Edwards said she thinks the Bookmark Cafe is a good alternative to the busy Memorial Union. “Memorial Union is kind of loud, so if you wanted to study and have a drink at the same time, there’s now another option,” Edwards said.

Public library's coffee cart will serve Lakota Coffee

In early November, the Columbia Public Library will launch its coffee cart. The cart, which will usually be parked in the lobby of the library at Garth Avenue and Broadway, has been planned since the library opened a year ago.

Lakota Coffee Co. has been contracted to provide coffee. Pastries will come from The Upper Crust.

Melissa Carr, director of the Daniel Boone Regional Library, said the new project will be “a great local partnership to provide service to our patrons.”

The library has received quite a response from the public about the new coffee cart, Carr said, and the most frequently asked question is “When are you going to have coffee?” The library previewed the coffee cart last Sunday at its one-year anniversary celebration, giving people a glimpse of java to come.

“The patrons seemed very excited about this new service,” Carr said.

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