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New coffee shop expected to 'revitalize' downtown Altoona

A new coffee shop and art studio opened downtown this week, and the owner said her goal is to bring people back to the area.

ALTOONA -- A new coffee shop and art studio opened downtown this week, and the owner said her goal is to bring people back to the area.

Sarah Vogel said she's had her eye on the corner of 13th Street and 11th Avenue for about five years.

This week, her shop, The Clay Cup opened in one of the several vacant storefronts.

"There was nothing else like this so I knew this was what downtown needed to start bringing more and more people down," Vogel said.

It's one of the only coffee shops in and around the city, but it's not just a place to pick up caffeine.

The shop also has walk-in pottery, and this summer, Vogel said she plans to host watercolor and clay classes, meaning you can drink your coffee out of a mug you made yourself.

"The idea of coffee and art I think is kind of crucial to downtown Altoona -- in bringing people together," Vogel said.

It's not far from where students walk back and forth from downtown classes.

"For the students of Penn State Altoona and everyone working around here, they needed a place to go where they can relax or have meetings," Vogel said.

The studio-cafe opened Tuesday, and even with during heavy snow, it's been busier and busier each day. Thursday afternoon, the tables were full.

"Revitalizing the downtown area is just an ultimate dream, so I'm excited," Vogel said.

The official grand opening will be Monday, March 20, beginning at 7 a.m.

Walk-in pottery starts at $12.

More information about The Clay Cup can be found on its website, at https://www.theclaycup.coffee/.

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