Anne Koelling: So much more than just java
October 22, 2008
Editor’s note: This is one in a series of profiles for The Women of Tahoe, a special section of theTribune celebrating South Shore women who are a vital part of our community.
Anne Koelling has been all over the world and found her own slice of heaven right here in Tahoe.
“I remember seeing the mountains in the distance, with the snow on top, and they would draw me,” Koelling said. “I think I was always meant to be here.”
Koelling, the owner of Not Just Java in the Round Hill Center, has been here for several years. After taking an early retirement from American Airlines and selling her home in Vacaville to buy in Tahoe, she appreciates the community she has become a part of, and the one-of-a-kind natural beauty. Whether walking with her dog, enjoying the beach in the summer or watching the snow fall from her cozy cafe, she is right at home.
“I don’t mind the weather, because it is all so beautiful,” she added. “Even in the winter, the sun shines, and it cheers you.”
Koelling recalls that she had been a visitor here for years, always wanting her own place. Once she came for good, she found open arms in her community, and has tried to cultivate that same feeling in her business.
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“I learned people’s dogs and their names,” she added. “Now, the dogs come right in and know where I keep the treats. … I can see someone parking their car and have their coffee ready when they walk in.”
It is a personal touch that Koelling believes is one of the reasons we live here. She admits that one of the only drawbacks could be that her family is a little harder to get to. But the added community ties are a benefit as well.
She gives back by being a benefactor of the arts in the community – displaying local artists’ pottery, paintings and even her husband’s first novel. She donates to local schools and helps advertise plays and arts events – something she would like to see more of.
“In the short time I have been here, I have seen the local kids grow up (from grade school to middle and high school),” she said. “And I am glad to support their activities and events, and offer a place for them to come after school.”
As of last July, the coffee shop has converted into an evening venue for appetizers and wine until 7 p.m. She sees the cozy atmosphere as an easy place for folks to have a conversation. Psychic Dayle Schear will return soon for weekly readings also. One of the benefits of staying open later is the opportunity to offer the space for those who have monthly or weekly meetings.
“I would like to encourage groups to meet here, even after 7,” Koelling added. “I don’t mind staying a couple hours extra for the community. … That’s what we’re all about.”