kaffrins coffee

Kaffrin’s Coffee

For a few years, Connell has enjoyed having a local specialty coffee shop. But on January 15th, 2019, new owners Adam and KaTrina Kunkle opened Kaffrin’s Coffee with a new and fresh community minded vision. The local shop was restructured under a different name and with a lot of new ideas to generate community engagement while still providing quality beverages with personal service. Kaffrin’s serves coffee, teas, smoothies, Italian sodas and many other items as well.  Adding yet another level of business to the coffee shop, they also opened their doors to local artists and craft vendors to bring in their items to display on the walls and to offer to customers.

Kaffrin’s Coffee (pronounced Kaff-rIn) got its name from the owners daughter (Katherine – 4years old) as that is how she says her name. “She is a social butterfly and can light up any room she walks into, as well as make friends with anyone and everyone. She has a magnetic personality and she’s the reason I was brave enough to try and save Connell’s lone coffee shop”, says owner, KaTrina.

The Kunkle family moved to Connell in 2012 and had no plans to open a business – but this opportunity fell into their laps at a great time and they jumped at it. KaTrina goes on to say, “Besides our daughter, we have an older son (as well as a newborn son now) and when our older son started school Katherine was absolutely lost without her best friend, so we would go to the coffee shop and she made friends with all the baristas and a lot of the patrons. She would always order a “Kaffrin Coffee” (hot coco) and then tell them if I wanted a ‘mommy coffee’ or ‘mommy tea’. I couldn’t see her favorite place go away, I had to do something! So now, here we are.” Funny fact about the owners though – KaTrina is super outgoing but also loves to be a homebody and enjoy time with her family, with coffee of course! While Adam doesn’t actually like coffee (crazy huh?), he does enjoy the smoothies, Italian sodas and lemonades too.

Kaffrin’s Coffee has been a boost to the Historic Downtown area of Connell – hosting many community events in less than a year of being open – and they don’t plan on stopping anytime soon. They offer a community hang out, a place to come get cozy with friends and enjoy a favorite drink. In May they hosted the first annual car show, bringing in many people for that event. They have also hosted several paint nights, board game days, a teen night, and just this last weekend a Ladies night. Several home based businesses have come in on Saturdays for customers to shop. Be sure to look at the chalkboard in the shop to see upcoming events or check out the FaceBook page – Kaffrinscoffee and click on events tab to see what is happening in the next month or Instagram – @KaffrinsCoffee.

This summer, they put in many hours of hard work to create an outdoor space in the backyard for customers to enjoy as well as having a couple different conversation areas inside: couches, tables, benches – something for all ages to sit and enjoy. As far as expanding – they plan to expand only locally in the Connell Shop. Hopefully someday (3-5 years) adding a little drive through, serving soups, salads and sandwiches. They currently have 4 part time employees.

Kaffrin’s Coffee Shop is located at 257 N Columbia Ave in Connell – you can reach them at Kaffrinscoffee@gmail.com or on Facebook or Instagram. They are open Monday-Friday 6:00am-6:00pm and Saturdays 8:00am-2:00pm during the school year.  Their summer hours are posted at the shop (typically only altered hours for July and August). With the holiday season coming up and cold weather setting in – come and bring a friend for a warm drink or grab a few gift cards for some quick gifts from family, friends, teachers and neighbors.

bobbie lee alpaca farm

Bobbie Lee Alpaca Farm

Just a few miles outside of Connell is Bobbie Lee Alpaca Farm owned by Michael and Bobbie Woodcock. They have had the farm for 2 years and have grown quite a bit in a short amount of time. They raise the alpacas for their fiber to then make retail items to sell – scarves, hats, socks, rugs, blankets, gloves, dryer balls, soap, fertilizer and other apparel items as well.  They also open their farm up for tours to the public too so that they can educate others on the kind and gentle nature of alpacas and also provide information on their fiber as well. Tours are available any day before 5:00pm, they just ask that you first call ahead.

Bobbie Lee Alpaca Farm is a family business. Aside from Michael and Bobbie, they also have their daughter and Bobbie’s sister who help with the business as well. Bobbie’s sister makes some of the retail items from the alpaca fibers.  Something new they did this year and will continue to do in the warmer weather months is Alpaca Yoga. Typically you sign up in advance and then show up on the day with your yoga mat. As you do yoga in the field, the curious and friendly alpacas with wander throughout and join the group.  

The Woodcocks lived in Connell a few years ago when they relocated back to Washington. After then moving to Pasco for 5 years, they decided that they wanted to start the Alpaca farm and that Connell would be the perfect place for it. Bobbie stated, “Connell just felt more like home than anywhere else so we moved back and started raising alpacas.”  They wanted to be able to bring something new to the community, something that everyone would be able to enjoy while learning the unique features thatalpacas provided both as a live animal and from products derived from alpacas.    

The weekend of September 27-29th was National Alpaca Weekend – the Woodcocks opened up the farm for tours, despite the very cold weather. The community got to go out and feed the alpacas and walk in the pens amongst them all the while learning about them too. Some fun facts about alpacas – they are much smaller then llamas and don’t spit (unless threatened), they have a gestation period of 11 months and have the capability to choose when to have their baby. All babies are born on a decent weather day between 10am and 1pm – the mother alpaca knows that her baby needs to be up and stable before it gets dark so they don’t have babies when they know they wouldn’t have enough time to be up and eating before then.  Also alpaca products are as soft as cashmere and warmer than wool and the best part is they don’t have the ‘itch factor’ in their fiber.

So if you are looking for something fun, unique, and free to do locally, call to visit the Bobbie Lee Alapaca Farm – it is perfect for little kids too! It is located just a few miles east of Connell at 3961 E SR 260, just be sure to call ahead if you’re coming out to be sure they are there and available – #509-948-0062.  You can get more information on their products and about alpacas by emailing bobbieleealpaca@gmail.com or check out their website bobbieleealpacafarm.com. They are also on facebook – like their page and stay up to date on any events they are hosting and follow the progress and growth of their baby alpacas and the whole farm too.

papa rays

Papa Ray’s

Papa Ray’s is the newest restaurant to open up in Connell and is owned by Ray & Rachel Robinson. After an extensive remodel including new and additional seating options, new paint and wall coverings, and decor, they opened in March 2019. Their menu includes pizza, burgers, appetizers, salad bar, wings, dessert pizzas, and since initially opening has added take-n-bake pizzas. The other unique service Papa Ray’s provides is a delivery option – a first to Connell residents or those who are just outside of town.  

Ray and Rachel have been in the food business for 17 years. Previous to moving to Connell, they owned Time Out Pizza in Quincy from 2003-2018.  They consider their business in Connell to be a family business as their kids work there in addition to 5 other part time employees. Opening a new business in a new town has meant long hours for them but they have enjoyed the opportunity to get to know the community.

Papa Ray’s came to Connell because the Robinsons wanted to be able to own the building they were working in.  They visited Connell and loved the small town feeling, supportive community, and just so happened to find the perfect space that they were looking for in old downtown. The Robinson’s have 4 children, 2 daughters and 2 sons. Their oldest daughter is married and lives in Moses Lake but she comes to work at the restaurant in Connell, one son is on a church mission, and then they have a sophomore son and a freshman daughter who both attend Connell High School. Papa Ray’s immediately engaged in the community by becoming chamber members, sponsoring and donating to chamber events as well as several other school and community activities as well. During the recent Manton Way fire, Papa Ray’s was one of the businesses that provided pizzas for the fire fighters and first responders.   

So, if you haven’t already, be sure to check out Papa Ray’s for either lunch or dinner – take the family to dine in, order for delivery or get a pizza and bake it at home.  They offer “Group Specials” that are perfect for a family or big groups – they include a pizza, sides and drinks.  Some of the Robinson’s personal pizza favorites and local favorites include the ‘Papa Ray’ and ‘The Works’. They have 24 named pizzas to choose from or you can always build your own so surely there is something for the entire family to enjoy. They even have pizza with corn (Calvinator) or pickles (Lil Ray) and also Gluten Free Pizza crust. They are located at 245 N Columbia Ave and are open Monday – Saturdays 11:00am -8:00pm or 9:00pm.