Students take advantage of downtown coffee shops

Students take advantage of downtown coffee shops

The residents of Winston-Salem deeply value the trendy coffee culture downtown, and students are no exception. Many local businesses serve students from neighboring high schools, colleges and universities. Coffee shops in downtown serve as more than just social spots to get coffee; rather, they also function as key study places for many students.

With 11 functioning and popular coffee shops in the downtown area, students have many different options to use the coffee shops that best suit their study habits and are accepting of long visits.

Liberty Arts Coffee House has been open for only a year on North Liberty Street between W. 6th St. and W. 5th St. With numerous electrical outlets, tables of all sizes and a quiet ambiance, it is a popular destination for studying students. Barista Teresa Prevatte has only been working in Liberty Arts Coffee House for six weeks. 

“This coffee house is really … conducive for studying,” Prevatte said. “It’s quiet, we have Wi-Fi and outlets. It is a great atmosphere.”

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Prevatte didn’t seem too concerned with customers coming and staying for long periods of time.

“Most the customers are regulars and will come and will stay for awhile,” she said.

Down a few blocks is one the most popular and famous coffee shops in Winston-Salem, Krankies. Krankies is located on the corner of N. Patterson Avenue and E. 3rd St. and has been open for 14 years.

Krankies has received a bit of backlash from studying students when it comes to their most recent changes and upgrades. Manager Gaby Cardall addressed these concerns.

“Two years ago, we transitioned from a coffee shop to a café. Some people were like ‘Oh no, no more couches, no more outlets,’ but we are transitioning away from being just a coffee shop,” Cardall said.

Krankies is no longer a typical coffee shop to study in.

“We want it to be active and energized and if it was filled with people studying we wouldn’t have that,” Cardall said. “We have changed a lot over the years; we added a full kitchen and a full bar and that has pushed some people away.”

Camino Bakery, which serves as both a bakery and a coffee shop, is located in the center of W. 4th St. between N. Marshall Street and N. Cherry Street. Manager Jordan Poe-Crawford sees his coffee shop a little differently than Krankies and thinks it is a great place to study.

“Coffee shops are set up as a third place, a community gathering spot,” Poe-Crawford said. “A lot of people need to get away from campus and take a mental break. Colleges are like homes for students, so it can be nice to get away from home sometimes.”

When it comes to the overall coffee culture in the downtown area, Poe-Crawford was not afraid to give credit where it was deserved.

“Krankies is a big part of the coffee culture in downtown. We started our bakery with them in 2009 and even used their coffee until this past winter,” he said.

Erin Allred and Olivia Menden, who are second-year students at the Wake Forest School of Medicine, enjoy studying in Camino.

“We do have a new, beautiful school, but we love coming here,” Allred said.

Although there are facilities to study in at the neighboring schools and colleges and a newly renovated library in downtown Winston-Salem, students are still drawn to do their school work at coffee shops.

“It is a less academic atmosphere so it is a great place to study when you’re stressed,” Menden said.

“An anxiety resolution,” Allred added.

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