You’ve probably seen the bright red wagon parked in the Dam Plaza parking lot and wondered what it was. The people placing their order outside its window will be quick to tell you it’s the best thing to happen to Page since Antelope Canyon.
The LP Espresso Wagon, owned by sisters-in-law Erin and Kim Cranston, serves coffee drinks, hot tea, iced drinks and baked goods.
It was Erin’s idea to open the LP Espresso Wagon.
“Page needed good coffee,” she said. “I’m a coffee freak. I need good, dark, strong coffee. I can make that kind of coffee at home, but I’m also the kind of person who enjoys going out and enjoying that good coffee in a nice setting. Page doesn’t have a place with the kind of dark, rich coffee that I like.”
Erin didn’t think she was the only “coffee freak” in Page. She felt confident that if someone opened a coffee shop that catered to coffee connoisseurs that such a business would be successful. She wanted to be the person who opened that coffee shop, but finding a good location and procuring the necessary business loan was beyond her reach.
“And then I saw the espresso wagon parked in the `for sale’ lot,” she said. “I started thinking about it again.”
After a few days thinking about it, she came to the conclusion that she wanted to go for it. The next thing she did was call her sister-in-law Kim and asked her if she wanted to be partners with her.
“I really wanted to do it but I didn’t want to do it alone,” Erin said. “Plus, Kim and I both have different skill sets and talents that we bring to this and I knew for this to be a success I needed her on board.”
“I was so excited to be a part of it,” Kim said. “I saw it as a way to help Erin, who’s ready to move away from the bartending scene, and I also saw it as a good investment.”
The Cranstons opened the LP Coffee Wagon on May 12. Their business model is simple: make great coffee without being overpriced, and cater to the locals.
Of course, they also expect their business will also be popular with tourists who don’t want to wait in line for 20 minutes to get their coffee.
“If we see one of our regulars in line with 20 tourists, we’ll make their drink and nod for them to come around to the back window so they won’t have to wait,” said Kim.
Keeping in line with their locals first approach they have also established a call-ahead line for their customers to call in their orders ahead of time and have it waiting for them when they arrive.
The LP Espresso Wagon isn’t big, it’s only about five feet wide and 12 feet long, but it’s big enough. For now. By starting small they were able to do it without getting a loan.
“After we got back our tax returns and saved up some paychecks we had enough to start,” Erin said.
They purchased the wagon and touched it up with some new paint. Their espresso machine was delivered to them last Saturday, which they quite enjoyed.
“It’s top of the line. It’s still so red and sparkly,” said Kim.
Though they may be starting small, they’re dreaming big. In the immediate future they’ll add tables with umbrellas outside their current location. Also in the works, they’re making their own blend of coffee.
Ultimately, they hope the LP Espesso Wagon will prove successful enough that they can someday expand their coffee business into a Page storefront, where they want to add local art and events.
“We want to take over Page with good coffee,” said Erin. “I’m surprised no one’s done this yet.”
Between the wagon and the storefront the Cranstons also plan to be at all Page events from the weekly farmer’s market to the Balloon Regatta.
The LP Espresso Wagon is open 7 days a week. 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekdays, 8 a.m. to noon weekends.
They serve all coffee drinks such as drip, cappuccino, espresso, Americano, café latte, café au lait, bullet proof, hot chocolate, assorted hot teas, bubble tea and more. They also served baked goods such as cookies, brownies and muffins, as well as granola bars, and fruit. And that call ahead number to place your drink order is 928-612-8071.