Alli Cat’s Cafe | The Story Behind It

Alli Cat’s Cafe, the kid’s barista play area at Main Street, has been one of the most enjoyed additions to the newly completed project. We have answered many questions regarding this little space and thought it might be interesting to share some behind the scenes information and photos of how this cafe came to be.

Several years ago, we spent a family day visiting the Indianapolis Children’s Museum. Of all the displays and exhibits at the museum, the one most enjoyed by our kids was the China Exhibit, where they got to pretend to be chefs. The kids could make sushi, grill food, and serve guests. We watched as our kids put on aprons, chef hats, and served the adults pretend fish, and other fine foods.

The most interesting thing to us, was how well the kids played with other children they had never met, and thoroughly enjoyed their time with simple toys and pretend play…No electronics or video games needed. The kitchen was entertaining children of all ages for long periods of time!

We left the museum, and started talking…about how we could do this in a much smaller scale at Main Street. How we could let kids get creative, pretend to be baristas or bakers, take orders, and serve each other, and most of all – use their imaginations!

As this idea started to grow, we started by doing some basic research. Unable to find any other idea like we had in mind online, we started by finding an espresso machine and a cash register that looked realistic, after that we added more green or wooden toys until we felt we had enough to outfit the bar.

Approximately a year after the museum visit, we met with Jamie Miller, designer at Ayr Cabinet Co. He understood what we were trying to accomplish, and he took exact measurements of our current bar and pastry case, and scaled it down to miniature size. He also used the measurements of our toy cash register, and other toy brewing equipment, and tried to fit them into the space we had. After the plans were completed, Alli Cat’s Cafe, named after our youngest daughter Allison, quickly took shape.

We hope this little corner of our shop continues to be a place where your family can have fun together, and most of all – make memories!

Enjoy the pictures of Alli setting things up during the construction period, below:

“The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge,  but imagination.” – Albert Einstein

 

More photos of some of the little people that have stopped by at Main Street.

As a note: We would love to encourage all of you to let your kids enjoy the space as it was created and designed for – to interact with other kids and adults, to pretend play, and to enjoy all the toys provided here. However, Please use respect when you leave the space, ensuring it is ready for other kids coming after you. Use caution in making sure your kids don’t damage or misuse the items provided for everyone’s enjoyment. THANK YOU to those of you who have donated toys to our space. We greatly appreciate it. Thank you!

 

Source list: (some affiliate links included)

Custom Barista Bar and Pastry Case by Ayr Cabinet  

Custom Sign by Aimee Weaver Designs 

Chairs and Tables – RH Baby and Child

Cash Register- Pottery Barn Kids

Melissa & Doug Brew & Serve Wooden Coffee Maker Set – Amazon 

Fisher-Price Wooden Toys, Early Bird Barista Set –Amazon

Donuts Pretend Play Toy Food Set for Kids (1 Dozen) -Amazon

Green Toys Cupcake Set- Amazon

Espresso Machine – Amazon

Pastries – Pottery Barn Kids

Melissa & Doug Wooden Steep & Serve Tea Set, Pretend Play, All-Wood Tea Service – Amazon

Melissa & Doug  Let’s Play House Baking Spice Set – Amazon

Apron Shelf and Hooks – Hobby Lobby 

Child Size Aprons by – KNG Design

Wall Mounted Book Shelf – Pottery Barn Kids

Melissa & Doug Tip & Sip Toy Juice Bottles – Amazon

 

Photography credits include MG3 PhotoJessica Rose PhotographyEl Jefe Photography

 

We’re Open!

 

We are re-open and are actively hiring for all positions! If you have an interest in baking, or love coffee and serving people, we would love to talk! For more information, please see our Employee Application to apply online. You may also apply in person. We accept applications for all shifts and for full time and part time positions. While experience in food service is a plus, it is not required. Thank you!

Update on Remodeling Project!

Hello!

I’d like to take a few moments to update you on what’s happening next door at our former roasting and office space…

  

Construction on our new addition began early this spring after all the necessary permits were obtained.  As of today, things are moving along and we are ready for drywall followed by painting and flooring. 

      

 

The new addition will include restrooms, seating, retail areas, and also more quiet study areas for your convenience. While we are closed later this summer, we will also be updating some of the seating options in our current space.

Additionally – You can see pictures of our roasting facility (completed in 2017) here which is located at the former Nappanee Health & Fitness building at 158 E Market (just a few doors down from the coffee house).

 

A few questions we get asked frequently that I would like to address:

Are you going to be closed for a long time to make the opening between the two buildings?  We will not be closed longer that is necessary, and the goal is two weeks. As the time approaches for our shut down, we will be keeping you informed on convenient ways to order coffee, and other details you may have questions about.

Just how much seating are you going to add? Thanks for asking. Our goal is not driven as much by capacity as it is to add varied seating options to better serve our current customer base. We would love to add more options and spaces for our guests through different levels, private corners, a library area, quiet areas for students, and places for groups to have meetings as well.

I’m worried that Main Street will feel different and that my favorite spot won’t be there anymore. Another great concern! We would welcome you to use our contact us form, and express your thoughts about specific ideas or areas. We get lots of varied responses, and although things will look somewhat different, we hope the changes will all be positive and you will love the overall outcome.

We appreciate your interest, involvement, and support of Main Street. Also- a big shout out to our staff — They have done an amazing job of keeping it chill through many crazy days in the past few months. Thanks!! Marcus

  

 

 

Amazon + Main Street Roasters

Enjoy the Benefits of Amazon and Main Street!

We wanted to let you know  that we are offering two of our coffees, Main Street Blend and Jamaican Me Crazy on Amazon.

We are offering this option for our friends that aren’t local, or If you don’t have a convenient way to stop by our shop on a regular basis.

We’d love to add more varieties in the future, but for now, enjoy the convenience of a few options and the free 2 day shipping with Amazon Prime.

We can always ship your coffees through our website as well, however we are happy to offer this as an additional option.

Thank you for your continued support of our small roastery and business, and stay tuned for more exciting changes coming soon.

We truly appreciate every order.

-Marcus Miller

Main Street Roasters – Roastery Addition Pictures 2017

We’ve attached a few photos to show the process of our new Main Street Roasters remodel, completed in Spring of 2017. We moved from our former roastery inside Main Street Coffee House, to 158 E Market, (just a few doors down from the coffee house) and now have much more space to unload pallets, store coffees, as well as room for storage and offices. We’d like to give a few shout outs to the following companies who helped us with our remodeling efforts.

John Mast Construction

Graber’s Flooring Studio

Loring Smart Roast