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Do you want to know what’s happening in the eastern Idaho business scene? We’ve got you covered. Here is a rundown of this week’s business news across the valley.
The Drink Factory opening second location in Ammon next month
AMMON – After several years of business, a popular soda and drink shop is expanding.
Anja Trautner, owner of The Drink Factory, is opening a second drive-thru location across from Smith RV on Hitt Road in Ammon.
“We were supposed to be open a month ago, but when (the pandemic occurred), we held off to see what was going on and make sure we were still going to be in business,” Trautner tells EastIdahoNews.com.
Business has remained strong at the 17th Street location during COVID-19, Trautner says. The new 16-foot-by-40-foot building on Hitt Road is up with signs out front. Crews are still working on flooring and plumbing for the new shop.
Though Trautner is not exactly sure when it will open, she is aiming for mid-June.
The menu will remain the same at the new location, but it will not include an espresso bar due to lack of space.
“I will still have coffee, especially flavored coffee and cold brews, for anyone who wants those,” says Trautner.
She’s also planning to swap out the drink menu at the new location every six months to give people a taste of the other drinks they aren’t as familiar with.
Customer convenience is the main focus at the new location, she says.
“We’ll have two lanes, a quick lane for people who know what they want and a lane for people to look at the menu and not feel (rushed),” Trautner says.
The Drink Factory first opened in 2018 at 2565 E. 17th Street in Ammon. It offers soda and a limitless variety of combinations to mix it with, Trautner says. Trautner refers to the drinks as “mocktails” because each is mixed like cocktail drinks at a bar, minus the alcohol.
“We do the same kind of service as a bar would — it’s just soda instead of alcohol,” she says.
The most popular mocktail is White Trash, which is Mountain Dew with peach and coconut cream. The sugar cookies are popular as well.
“I’ve grown up working in restaurants and bars,” Trautner says. “I love the change of scenery and people and making people happy.”
The new location is a result of customer demand, she says. Many customers on the north end of town visit the 17th Street location.
“They were begging us to get one closer to that part of town, and once we heard Costco was coming (on the other side of the roundabout), it made us (realize) this was a good idea,” says Trautner.
The Drink Factory is also in Blackfoot at 550 E Walker St. Another location is in the works on the west end of Idaho Falls, which Trautner will speak more about at a later date.
Trautner is grateful to everyone who has supported her over the years, especially during the pandemic. She recently started serving food from Taqueria El Rodeo in Ammon to help out their business. This month only, she’s offering 15% off any menu item to anyone who buys a T-shirt from FUEL’d Apparel & Design in Idaho Falls.
“The community is awesome. They have been super supportive. We’ve seen a lot of new customers,” Trautner says. “I’ve seen so many new faces and good people, and I am so appreciative of all of them.”
The Drink Factory is open 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday. Trautner anticipates similar hours at the new location, but it will be closed Sunday.
Pocatello Fleet Services Dept. getting national attention
POCATELLO – Despite being less than a year old, the city of Pocatello’s Fleet Services Department is being spotlighted on the national level. The March issue of The Municipal magazine features the department in an article titled “Pocatello, Idaho, bids silos farewell with new fleet services department.” The story highlights the department’s beginnings, its structure, and the benefits of having a centralized point for fleet maintenance. The Fleet Services Department is at the Public Works Annex at 2405 Garrett Way, which consolidates repair and maintenance of city vehicles. Click here to read The Municipal’s story.
Shoshone-Bannock Casino and hotel reopening next week
FORT HALL – Gaming and Hotel Operations Management, in consultation with the Shoshone-Bannock Tribal Business Council and local health officials, have decided to open Shoshone-Bannock Casino Hotel to the public on Tuesday, May 19. The gaming floor will open at 7 a.m. and will close at midnight daily for thorough sanitation protocols. To reopen with a staggered, phased approach, Shoshone-Bannock Tribal Members and invited guests will be welcome on Monday, May 18, at 7 a.m. Tribal Identification is required, and invited guests have been notified. Due to current health concerns, the casino and hotel will open with processes and protocols that may be new but have been implemented with the health and safety of guests and team members in mind.
Macy’s in Idaho Falls now welcomes customers in store
IDAHO FALLS – As of Monday, Macy’s Idaho Falls Grand Teton is reopening to customers. It will be open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., offering contact-free curbside pick-up. For customers shopping in-store, Macy’s has implemented enhanced safety and wellness procedures to help combat any potential health concerns. This includes frequent and enhanced cleaning in heavily trafficked areas and on hard surfaces, implementing social distancing guidelines to maintain 6 feet between all customers and colleagues, installing sanitation stations in frequently visited locations throughout the store, as well as plexiglass at select registers. Macy’s employees will also wear face masks to help prevent the spread of the virus.