A triple-threat business, Wascott Coffee, Cones and Cuts, is brewing in the new building next door to the Stop a Sec in the town of Wascott.
One side of the building, Wascott Cuts, opened in mid-December. Stylist Lynn Anderson offers haircuts, color, foils, perms, facial waxing and pedicures for men, women and children.
The finishing touches are being put on the other half of the fully accessible building at 6773 E. County Highway T, which will house a coffee shop and ice cream parlor. Anderson and her husband, Mike, expect it to open by March 1. The businesses are generating a lot of attention. The only advertising Anderson did for Wascott Cuts was a post on her personal Facebook page.
“I posted it on a Thursday,” she said. “That Saturday I did nine people.”
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When she posted information about the spring opening of Wascott Coffee and Cones, responses flooded in.
“We’re the buzz of the town,” Mike Anderson said.
The entrepreneurs will offer amenities that the small town, population 766, was missing. Town clerk and treasurer Jeannette Atkinson said there’s not another coffee shop or ice cream parlor in the area.
“I think it’s a beautiful addition to our community,” she said.
The Andersons will also be poised to cater to the area’s seasonal visitors. Wascott has 100 lakes, big to little, within its borders, and people flock to them in warm weather. The pandemic increased those numbers last summer, as people focused on outdoor activities that minimized the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
The town of Wascott is a beautiful serene area, Atkinson said, and it has been growing over the last three years.
"People are moving here, making it their home," she said.
There was a 27% increase in the number of Wascott building permits issued from 2019 to 2020. The town issued 36 permits for additions or alterations to existing dwellings in 2020, as well as 39 permits for accessory buildings or garages, 12 permits for seasonal dwellings and five permits for year-round homes.
In 2019, the town issued four permits for year-round homes, five seasonal dwelling permits, 48 permits for accessory buildings or garages and 15 permits for alterations or additions to existing buildings.
Atkinson, who has lived at the point between the Minong flowage and Cranberry Lake for 15 years, said water traffic had never been as busy as it was in 2020. The site was inundated with activity, mostly pontoon boats, with the occasional kayakers or canoe.
“It was constant, constant traffic all summer long — more than I’ve ever seen,” Atkinson said.
Taking the leap
The Andersons purchased the five acre parcel of land along County Highway T about six years ago, and broke ground for the new building in June. Mike Anderson, a project coordinator and inspector with Lake Superior Consulting, said he took out his retirement to build the business, which is a five-minute drive from their home in the town of Minong.
Mike Anderson grew up in Superior, but spent many summer hours camping at Totogatic Park on the Minong flowage. He’s owned property on Big Sand Lake for 30 years and held a number of jobs, including in carpentry and commercial window work. He poured that knowledge into serving as general contractor for the new businesses, from building the accessible ramp, deck and counters to scouring for fixtures.
He said the couple is looking forward to providing a place where the whole family can gather.
The interior of the building holds some nostalgic elements for anyone who visited the Village Scoop in Minong. When the longtime ice cream parlor went out of business over the summer, the Andersons scooped up a lot of its decor, including signs and the menu board. The ice cream counter was built by Mike Anderson and showcases reclaimed wood from Lake Superior.
Lynn Anderson, a Northwestern High School alumna who grew up between the towns of Brule and Iron River, brings decades of experience to Wascott Cuts. She’s had her cosmetology license since 1987 and worked at a number of local salons, including La Peinado, Regis and Denise’s Hair Design. Even while working at Callaway Dental in Superior’s South End for nine years, she kept up her license.
In November 2019, the couple established a separate business, Northwoods Kleaners, which specialized in cleaning vacation rentals in the Wascott area. Lynn Anderson said she’s cut down to just a few cleaning clients as they focus on opening the trio of businesses. The couple is already mulling additions to the property, such as a greenhouse.
Coffee, Cones and Cuts is located at 6773 East County Highway T. Call 715-817-3644 or message Lynn Olson Anderson on Facebook for more information or a salon appointment.