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New businesses fill vacant storefronts in St. Helens

by: SPOTLIGHT PHOTO: KATIE WILSON - Cafe 30 Coffee House plans to open its doors April 13. The building has been vacant since the end of March when Fresh Start Coffee Shop closed.Three vacant storefronts in St. Helens are getting a new start this spring.

A new coffee shop will take over where Fresh Start on Highway 30 left off after closing its doors in March, while Houlton Bakery on Columbia Boulevard, which also closed at the end of March, will have the same name but entirely different owners. The bakery opens today.

In Olde Towne St. Helens, a pizza place and pub will move into space formerly occupied by the Plantation House restaurant.

Houlton Bakery owner Max Huck hopes to keep some things the same for customers mourning the loss of Gainor Rikor's original Houlton Bakery, sourcing local ingredients when possible and baking treats and making food from scratch.

Ann Bauer, a pastry chef, will help Huck oversee the baking and managing of the new business. Starting today, the shop will be open Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. until 6:30 p.m.

Cafe 30 Coffee House, meanwhile, plans to open the next day, April 13.

"We're taking lemons and making lemonade," said Mark Holcomb, who owns Mark's Custom Exteriors as well as the coral-colored buildings across the street where Fresh Start was once a tenant. Since the building was already outfitted to be a coffee shop, Holcomb said he decided to open one of his own.

Cafe 30 Coffee House plans to be open Monday through Friday from 5 a.m. until 7 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Dave Woullet, owner and executive chef at the Klondike in Olde Towne St. Helens, is opening a new restaurant, Olde Towne Pizza and Pub, in the building across from the Klondike, formerly the site of a much-loved and missed cafe and later the home of the Plantation House. The new restaurant plans to offer a variety of speciality pizzas and brews.

According to a Facebook page for the restaurant, Olde Town Pizza and Pub, 298 S 1st St., will likely open sometime in May.