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Flying M Sold to New Owner

Longtime employee purchases downtown coffee hotspot

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During the Flying M's typical morning rush, a sleepy line snakes around coffee beans and knickknacks and out the downtown coffee shop's door. But on July 1, one thing was different--former owner Lisa Myers was one of the patient masses waiting in line for a latte.

"It's funny; Teresa was hesitating even ringing me up," said Myers, from the customer side of the counter.

Myers, who opened the Flying M Coffeehouse with husband Kevin in 1992, officially sold the Boise coffee hotspot to longtime employee Kent Collins on June 30. The Myers felt it was time to focus their energy on the Flying M location in Nampa.

"The kids are starting to go off to college; our second one leaves this fall," said Myers. "It just felt like the timing was right, we could pull back a little bit, concentrate on Nampa."

But longtime Flying M devotees can rest easy: The transition should go largely unnoticed.

"We'll keep the consistency; nothing should change really because [Collins is] still buying Flying M beans, which we roast in Nampa, and then we'll be doing our advertising together and our logo stuff together," said Myers.

According to Collins, owning the M has been a longtime dream.

"In October I will have been here 12 years," said Collins. "At about year 10, [Myers] made a little joke about selling the place one day, and I called 'dibs.'"

But Collins plans to maintain the Flying M's long-running traditions--rotating monthly art shows will still be organized by Jerms Laningham and John Warfel, and the M will continue to host Valentines for AIDS.

"I think this place is amazing, and I want to keep it that way. Maybe a couple of new chairs and tables would be nice, but other than that, everything else will stay just the same," said Collins. "I would never buy this place and then change it."

Surveying his new domain, Collins flashed a smile filled with nervous excitement and almost palpable pride before returning to man the espresso machine.

"I'm not sure if it's really sunk in yet," Collins said. "I signed all the bank papers and everything, but so far, it just seems like a regular shift."

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