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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Art meets coffee in renovated horse trailer, Lucky, popping up at local markets and office parks

Lucky Coffee Trailer recently launched and will be set up Saturday at Downtown ILM Farmers’ Market, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., weather permitting. (Port City Daily/Courtesy Lucky Coffee Trailer)

WILMINGTON — Over the last year, 21-year-old Savannah Logan watched the popularity of food trucks and mobile drinkeries take off in the midst of Covid-19 and decided there was no better time than the present to follow through on her dream of starting a mobile coffee unit. After purchasing a 1999 horse trailer, she and her boyfriend, Wesley Regnier, began building out Lucky Coffee.

First, they had to travel to South Carolina to find the wheels. Logan purchased it Mar. 30 from the cushion of savings she had collected over the last two years while managing Lucky Joe’s Coffee. She clarified, however, her trailer’s name isn’t a spinoff on the local brick-and-mortar. Rather, it’s an homage to her first dog, Lucky.

“He’s 16 now,” Logan said. “We still have him. I’m pretty superstitious as well, and ‘lucky’ has been a common occurrence in my life and seemed to really fit.”

The mobile unit will serve Logan’s love for being a barista — which she has been doing since high school — while allowing her to pursue her other passion: being an artist. She paints commissions, as well as pet portraits, and will increase her art-market footprint this year, too, she said. Combining both seemed a natural fit, as she will sell her hand-sculpted ceramic coffee mugs and cups for $15 or $20 on the trailer.

“I like to do little drawings on them,” Logan said. 

She etched two hummingbirds into one cup. One mug features a cowboy hat with “Howdy Mama” fired into it and yet another showcases the Lucky logo. 

“I want to have a bunch of mugs that say Lucky on them,” she said. “I’m going to get a stamp ordered.”

Logan also will showcase her art on the trailer itself. She plans to paint a mural on its back doors eventually and was inspired most recently by a trip to the Van Gogh immersive art exhibit touring museums currently.

“It just blew my mind,” Logan said. “And it made me definitely want to personalize my trailer — something colorful.”

Right now the rustic trailer is painted blue and features 100-year-old, restored shiplap wood her boyfriend’s father gifted her from his own home renovations. 

“It had a bunch of nails in it, so I sanded it, took all the nails out, stained it, and then we cut it and put it on the sides, and then we made a bar that is held up by chains,” she explained.

The trailer was a shell with a wooden floor and aluminum siding when she made the purchase. It didn’t even have a VIN number, so she and Regnier had to start its renovation from scratch. 

Logan hand-crafts ceramic coffee mugs and etches designs into them, like one branding her coffee trailer’s name. They’re for sale on the Lucky Coffee Trailer as well. (Port City Daily/Courtesy Lucky Coffee Trailer)

Inside they added a stainless steel food preparation counter she found on Craigslist, which holds her espresso machine, coffee pots and other equipment. They installed a sink, refrigerator and a place for the generator.

“I had to get an at-home title, get it inspected, get insurance and a new [operating authority] MCs number to make it legal,” she explained. 

Logan said she tried out numerous top-rated beans before landing on Durham’s Counter Culture brand. “They support small farms in Peru and Colombia,” she said, “and it’s Fairtrade, so it was very important to me to have quality and a reputable business that sells coffee.”

Lucky’s menu consists of espresso, drip coffee, cold brew, lattes, cappuccinos, mochas, and frappes. Logan also serves non-coffee drinks, like chai and matcha lattes, Arnold Palmers, lemonade, teas, and hot chocolate. Prices start at $2.

Logan parked the coffee trailer for the first time a few weeks ago at MegaCorp Logistics. She said she had quite a rush from the 200-person office team and went through two pounds of espresso beans in a couple of hours. Logan now has a standing gig at the office complex once a week — likely to take place Friday mornings. 

On Saturdays she parks Lucky at the Downtown ILM Farmers Market at Temple Baptist Church (1801 Market St.). The market’s founder, Bethany Carpenter, asked Logan to join the lineup last weekend for the first time. 

“It was a trial run,” Logan said, “and it was so much fun. Everyone was so kind.”

“I found her on Instagram” Carpenter explained. “Such a creative idea that I knew all the market vendors and customers would enjoy.”

Carpenter said feedback for the coffee hit high marks, too, as it goes with the market’s goal: supporting local artisans and makers.

“I know I couldn’t get enough of my iced caramel frappe,” she praised. 

Logan wants to book out more markets and office parks, of course, but has hopes to land at The Biggers Market on Market Street. “I think they’re super cool,” she said. “Sporting events, outdoor concerts — anything like that. I’m still feeling it out.”

Lucky Coffee Trailer will be parked Saturday, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the Downtown ILM Farmers Market, weather permitting.

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Shea Carver
Shea Carver
Shea Carver is the editor in chief at Port City Daily. A UNCW alumna, Shea worked in the print media business in Wilmington for 22 years before joining the PCD team in October 2020. She specializes in arts coverage — music, film, literature, theatre — the dining scene, and can often be tapped on where to go, what to do and who to see in Wilmington. When she isn’t hanging with her pup, Shadow Wolf, tending the garden or spinning vinyl, she’s attending concerts and live theater.

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