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Riverbend opens coffee shop downtown
Chet Susslin / The Citizen Tables and chairs are set up inside the Riverbend Coffee shop awaiting customers.

It's no secret that central New Yorkers, like most Americans, love their coffee.

With several Dunkin Donuts locations and the new Tim Horton's store scheduled to open next month, Cayuga County residents have several choices when needing their caffeine fix.

Starting this weekend, Auburnians will have yet another location from which to choose.

On Saturday, Tim Bridenbecker, owner of Riverbend Coffee in the Fingerlakes Mall, will host the grand opening of a second Riverbend location on the ground floor of Lattimore Hall in downtown Auburn.

In a telephone interview last week, Bridenbecker said that he decided to open a second Riverbend store due to popular demand.

“There's been a call from the community for a coffee shop in our downtown area,” he said. “So I'm just trying to fulfill that.”

The Riverbend location in the mall, which opened in June 2004, offers gourmet chocolates and gifts in addition to coffee.

“This new shop is going to have more of a coffeehouse feel,” he said. “The atmosphere is very comfortable. … we have leather sofas and armchairs that will seat about 18 people, and free Wi-Fi access.”

The shop will also have a full espresso bar with cappuccinos, lattes and frozen drinks, along with a full array of pastries, Bridenbecker continued.

“And we'll serve Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, which is gourmet coffee made in Vermont,” he said.

Numerous recent medical studies report that regular coffee drinkers reduce their chances of contracting Type 2 diabetes and colon cancer, and are less likely to suffer headaches.

In addition, a report published on WebMD.com stated that people who drink coffee on a regular basis are up to 80 percent less likely to develop Parkinson's disease.

One of Bridenbecker's goals with the new shop, he said, is to let the community decide what - and when - the shop will offer.

For now, Riverbend will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, and 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays.

“We'll be closed on Sundays for now, but if people say they want us to open Sunday mornings, we'll do that,” he said.

Saturday's grand opening will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., he explained, and will feature a ribbon-cutting ceremony with Bridenbecker's wife, Terri, who is executive director of the Cayuga County Chamber of Commerce.

“This weekend will also be good for us because that's when the kids will be moving into Lattimore Hall,” he said.

“So we'll welcome them, and welcome everybody in the community.”

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