“This is a new place to call home,” says Karen Carrigan, sitting with husband Jason in their Carrigan Cafe four days after the grand opening. Brian and Lori Sun used to own the space, formerly called My Favorite Cafe. Reached by phone, Brian Sun explains, “We have aging parents to care for, so we decided to sell.” The Carrigans were ready to buy.

After inking the deal on September 4, the Carrigans closed for twenty-two days while they completed a few touch-ups. Today its floor-to-ceiling windows illuminate newly finished pine plank floors and freshly painted pale green walls. The interior exposed brick remains, and, continuing the Suns’ commitment to showcase local talent, the walls are adorned with works by whichever artist is currently featured at Two Twelve Arts Center.

Karen, forty-two, was raised on a farm in Manchester. It’s no longer in the family, but the farm work ethic and support system live on. Her mom Ruth Haeussler, sister Alicia Smith, and nieces pitched in to help get the cafe ready for opening day. Jason, also forty-two, isn’t quitting his day job yet, although he wouldn’t mind giving up the commute to Trenton, where he works for Chrysler. “For now, I’m the guy writing the checks,” he jokes.

Karen Carrigan brings education and experience to the table: a 1995 WCC degree in culinary arts, a 2013 EMU degree in hotel and restaurant management, and years of restaurant work at everything from the WXYZ cafeteria in Southfield to Saline’s beloved Drowsy Parrot. She’s excited to feature local vendors: Guernsey Farms, Plymouth’s Coffee Express, Milan Coffee Works, Benny’s Bakery, Ed’s Bread, Barry’s Bagels, and Rumi’s Passion Gluten Free Bakery.

Carrigan’s sandwich menu offers a half-dozen choices. All $6.99, they have names like the Clover (turkey, Swiss, tomato, honey mustard, and mayo on farmhouse white) and the Carrigan Club (bacon, chicken breast, lettuce, tomato, provolone, and roasted red pepper sauce on sesame French bread); there’s also a design-your-own-sandwich option. “It’s an evolving menu,” explains Karen. She promises breakfast sandwiches, soups, and salads. “I’m still looking into a local soup maker, and I’m definitely making my egg salad,” she says.

Jason says that he and Karen want Carrigan Cafe “to be like the cafes of old, a venue that nurtures artists, poets, singer-songwriters and storytellers.” His late father, Andrew Carrigan, was a schoolteacher and beloved local poet. His mother was also a teacher.

“They were an inspiration, always encouraging me to do what I want to do,” says Karen.

Throughout the afternoon, customers come and go steadily, several calling Karen by name. Circling back to the home theme, she says, “It’s like seeing family.”

Carrigan Cafe, 107 S. Ann Arbor Street, Saline, 316-7633. Daily 6 a.m.-7 p.m.


“I can’t wait to decorate the place,” says Jamie Westcott, who’s just moved her Resale Boutique in downtown Saline. Business has been great, Westcott says, but when Tom Mac listed his photography studio for sale two blocks west of her current spot, she jumped at the chance to own, rather than lease. “It’s a whole house in great condition with restored original woodwork, beautiful hardwood floors, and on-site parking in the back,” says Westcott. She’ll have plenty of room to display her collection of household items and small furniture in addition to her consignment inventory of clothing. One of the rooms will be entirely devoted to footwear. “It’ll be floor-to-ceiling shoes and boots: Frye, Born, Clarks, Kate Spade, Ugg, and more.”

With ten years in the consignment business under her belt (including four in Chelsea, where she owned Fabulous Finds), Westcott has a loyal list of consignors who bring in items from brands like Banana Republic, J. Crew, Chico’s, and Anthropologie. Her plan is to open by mid-November. “It has such a cute front porch. I can’t wait to decorate that too,” says Westcott.

The Resale Boutique, 206 W. Michigan, Saline, 295-3030. Mon. -Sat. 10 a.m.-7 p.m., Sun. noon-4 p.m.


Two different craft beer venues are in the works for Saline.

Jerry and Heidi Tubbs plan to open Stony Lake Brewing Company at 447 E. Michigan Ave., in the former Jasmine Bistro space. The brewery won’t “be a restaurant, but rather a place to spend time with friends, play chess and other board games, and have a good beer. No TV. Customers can bring in takeout or have food delivered,” says Jerry. The couple is still waiting for state license approval, but, barring any setbacks, Saline will have its first microbrewery in January.

Next summer, longtime friends Ron Schofield, Jr., Mark Zadvinskis, and Ed Brosius plan to turn the old Methodist church on S. Ann Arbor St. into Salt Springs Brewery, a microbrewery and full-service restaurant featuring farm-to-table local fare.

The historic building’s current owners, Walt and Nancy Byers, will continue running their Stone Arch Arts and Events business until the sale goes through in early January. “We have events lined up right through the end of the year,” says Nancy.