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Perk up New coffee shop opens in Waynesville

Coffee lovers and addicts have a new place in Waynesville to get their fix.

Main Street Perks opened on Main Street about three weeks ago, filling a large, vacant hole in the downtown façade with goodies, caffeine, a wall of booths and a couple of café tables and chairs. The coffee shop is owned by the perky and outgoing Melisa Williams, a Florida native who moved to Waynesville in 2007.

Williams buys her coffee from Smoky Mountain Roasters in Waynesville and Bean Works in Asheville. Her goodies — muffins, bagels, cream cones and more — come from local baker Kandy Medford.

Main Street Perks also offers ice cream, malts and traditional, thick, need-a-spoon-to-eat shakes. While coffee and ice cream don’t really go hand-in-hand, Williams said the decision to offer the treat came down to one thing: “I like ice cream,” she said, laughing with her whole person.

It’s hardly Waynesville’s only coffee shop. There’s Smoky Mountain Café a block down the street, and Blue Ridge Books a block up the street. There’s Panacea Coffee Roasters a stone’s throw away in Frog Level. Plus, the new City Bakery with coffee offerings of its own opened up next door to Williams the same week as her own grand opening.

But she says people are slowly discovering the new coffee stop.

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“I’m happy,” Williams said. “It’s been progressively picking up everyday here.”

This first month or two of operating is crucial for any business, figuring out whether it can build and maintain a customer base — something that other Main Street storeowners understand.

“I am getting a lot of support from the merchants,” Williams said.

Other Main Street business owners have already become familiar faces at Waynesville’s newest coffee shop.

“It’s great to see the camaraderie between merchants,” said Buffy Phillips, director of the Downtown Waynesville Association. “They are delighted to have those places.”

Williams had hoped to open a few weeks sooner to avoid clashing with the much-anticipated opening of City Bakery, which sits next door. But, renovations to turn the former retail space into a coffee shop took longer and cost more than expected.

“There was a lot that needed to be updated,” Williams said.

Eventually, Williams hopes to add more seating. But, first, she is focused on finish the building renovations and promoting her business.

“I know that she has some wonderful ideas that she hasn’t been able to make happen yet,” Phillips said.

Main Street Perks will host an official opening party from 6:30-9 p.m. on April 13. The event will include live music — something that Williams hopes to offer regularly. Jeanne Nabor will perform on April 13.

Anyone with a demo CD is free to drop it off at the coffee shop, Williams said.

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