Offering coffee and conversation

New coffee shop aims to bring community together

Coffee shop owner Maleah Johnson and her sister Vanessa Barry make coffee for a customer. The shop has many different varieties of coffee on their menu. (Mckenna Jones)

When living in a small town, there is not always a place people can sit down, eat and socialize with friends, but the new coffee shop in Yutan, Derailed and Co., gives people the chance to catch up with old friends and neighbors, with a side of coffee. 

“Opening the shop has been fun,” said shop owner Maleah Johnson. “We enjoy having somewhere for people to stop in for a pastry and coffee, a place friends can meet, a place to have meetings and somewhere for kids to stop for a snack after school. We felt like the town could really benefit from this kind of space.”

A newly available space on Vine Street gave Johnson and her sister, Vanessa Berry, the opportunity to do something they’d talked about for some time.

“My sister and I had previously talked about how cool it would be to open a coffee shop. When that space became available in Yutan, we decided it was now or never,” Johnson said. 

As the shop opened their first day of school, August eleventh, it excited many students.

I really like going there. I can just stay in town instead of driving into Omaha every morning for coffee. I also meet up with my friends there. It’s really a nice hangout place,” junior Hailey Drews said. 

Seventh grader Addison Jones takes a drink of her coffee. Students stop in before school to grab a quick treat. (Mckenna Jones)

Although the shop just opened in August, Johnson said they will be adding more to their menu soon. 

“We are constantly thinking about our menu and listening to our customers who request things,” said Johnson. “We are just bringing in Chai tea and white chocolate mochas. We also have some new syrups. Our next big thing will be blended coffees and smoothies. We are hoping to do that soon!”

With the growth of their business, Johnson hopes it will expand into the community.

“As of now the Gathering Place church in town uses our space for their youth group on Sundays. We’re also considering leasing it for events like baby/wedding showers etc. Our future plans include finishing a patio out back for family movie nights and live music,” Johnson said. “We want it to be a community meeting space where everyone feels welcome.”