Customers who step inside Kindred Spirits will experience something new brewing in Youngtown.
The coffee shop, which opened last week, is tucked away in Youngtown’s commercial corridor near 111th and Alabama avenues, and customers say it provides an atmosphere that has not been seen in the community in quite some time — maybe ever.
Owners Debbi and Richard Skurka said town officials have dropped by to express their well-wishes before purchasing a morning cup of coffee or a salad for lunch.
Kindred Spirits is a far cry from its older, more traditional neighboring businesses.
“It’s new, bright and has energetic owners,” said Town Manager Lloyce Robinson. “The coffee shop has that certain ambiance that is found in most of our more progressive communities.”
Robinson said having new businesses such as Kindred Spirits open in Youngtown is “a start” toward revitalizing the business community, although progress has slowed for the opening of Youngtown Café and Elbows Bar near 111th and Alabama avenues.
“We’re very pleased with Kindred Spirits investing in our town,” Robinson said, noting Youngtown generates roughly $950,000 annually in retail sales and rental taxes.
Kindred Spirits is adorned with bright-colored walls; plush, leather chairs; a flat-screen television whose audio system pumps coffee house tunes; and an outside patio that could cater to 50 people or more for acoustic musical performances and poetry readings.
“I think people here (in Youngtown) are ready for it,” Debbi Skurka said.
Besides offering different variations of coffee, Kindred Spirits sells homemade pastries, sandwiches, salads, smoothies, cookies and other items. The Skurkas brew Toucanet coffee, an organically grown, fair-trade product.
Kindred Spirits also has a gift shop, which offers cards, T-shirts, meditation books and various mementos dedicated to the 12-Step Recovery Program, which offers guiding principles for recovery from addiction, compulsion and other behavioral problems.
The Skurkas said they have many friends in the recovery community and believe the 12-Step Recovery Program products and other spiritual, meditative offerings could also benefit many of their customers.
“We believe (the products) can serve a purpose for the community and make recovery easier for them,” Debbi Skurka said.
Kindred Spirits is the Skurkas’ first attempt at running a business. Debbi Skurka has been involved in the food service industry for more than 25 years and said opening a coffee shop has been a lifetime dream that’s finally been fulfilled.
The Phoenix residents said while they could’ve opened a coffee shop anywhere in the Valley, they were keen on establishing roots in a place like Youngtown, where they could become involved.
Kindred Spirits, 11127 W. Arizona Ave., Youngtown, is open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday; and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday.
For information, call 623-977-5282.