DINING

National coffee chain to open 2 drive-thrus in Galesburg. Here's why, where they will go

Jay Redfern
Galesburg Register-Mail
Scooter's Coffee opened a drive-thru location at 1181 N. 6th St. in Monmouth on Dec. 30. They have plans to open two drive-thrus in Galesburg later this year.

GALESBURG — Saying the local coffee market remains underserved, the owner of 10 Scooter's Coffee stores plan to bring two more drive-thrus to Galesburg.

Jeremy Music, who opened a Scooter's Coffee in Monmouth earlier this year, expects to locate the first drive-thru at the southeast corner of North Henderson and Sanborn streets. He and his investment partners are still searching for a second Galesburg location.

"We do great in these size of communities," Music said. "Just like any other town we go in to, we think Galesburg is underserved. It's a great community, and there is great traffic there on Henderson Street."

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First Scooter's Coffee in Galesburg

Music has an agreement to buy and will then demolish a vacant home and nearby former quick oil change shop at 1307 and 1317 N. Henderson St. to make room for the first Scooter's in Galesburg.

"We've already been working with the city, which has been very positive," Music said. "Really, by the time we're closing on the property — which hopefully is in the next 45 to 60 days — usually we're ready to start breaking ground.

Music's group operates 10 Scooter's drive-thrus, located primarily in southeast Iowa. They have stores under construction in Milan and Princeton and are in talks to locate a store in Kewanee. 

Scooter's Coffee has an agreement to purchase and will then demolish a vacant home and nearby quick oil change shop at 1307 and 1317 N. Henderson St. to make room for the first Scooter's in Galesburg.

"We're migrating east into Illinois right now," said Music, who resides in Mediapolis, Iowa. "We're contracted to have 50 Scooter's in Illinois and Iowa over the next few years."

Scooter’s Coffee was founded in 1998 when co-founders Don and Linda Eckles opened their first drive-thru coffeehouse in Bellevue, Nebraska. Approaching 500 locations in the U.S., Scooter’s Coffee serves customers from a convenient 660 square foot drive-thru kiosk.

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Music notes Scooter's uses a high-quality coffee sourced out of Costa Rica, and roasted at the corporate headquarters in Omaha.

"So in addition to the quality of coffee, we strive for very high customer service," Music said. "And we're very fast. And most of the facilities I operate, we can usually get cars through the line in under three minutes."

Scooter's offers a wide variety of coffee drinks, smoothies, teas, quenchers, energy-drink infusions and breakfast items. 

The addition of two proposed Scooter's drive-thrus comes at a time of a coffee shop craze nationally. Galesburg alone has three Starbucks locations, along with locally-owned Innkeeper's Fresh Roasted Coffee, Orange Cup Java Station (with another on the way), The Beanhive and a Dame Fine Coffee drive-thru with another on the way. That's not to mention coffee shops in Monmouth, Knoxville, Abingdon and many area towns.

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"I started franchising four years ago, and I've seen such a growth, not only in the coffee industry, but in this company," Music said. "More and more people are drinking coffee and energy drinks, and we think there's enough business to go around.

"Again, we think Galesburg is underserved, and we're looking to fill that gap."

Scooter's Coffee is open seven days a week, with general hours of operation from 5:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.