Inventrek welcomes Hydration Station

Hydration Station owners Rodney and Amy Ellis have partnered with the Greater Kokomo Economic Development Alliance to open a second location of their popular Greentown eatery inside Inventrek Technology Park at 700 E. Firmin St., Kokomo.

Nearly everything will be the same as its Greentown operation, including most of its large menu of coffees, teas, flavored sodas, smoothies, chocolate and vanilla soft-serve ice cream, and snacks that customers love. 

And while there won’t be a drive-thru available at Inventrek, curbside service and outdoor seating areas will be available. Unlike its Greentown eatery, however, the Inventrek location will have an indoor lobby.

For Lori Dukes, manager of economic development for Alliance, that was a vital component of this project. 

A PLACE TO GATHER

Dukes said the Inventrek team set out to create a space that welcomes tenants, students, and the general public. 

“I want to create an environment that our tenants and customers want to ‘hang out’ in and enjoy repeatedly,” she said.

To that end, the space features a variety of seating styles so that customers may choose the most suitable to their needs. 

The design goal was to create an atmosphere that kept in mind the intended use for the tenants as well as to acknowledge that Inventrek, which houses Purdue Polytechnic Kokomo, is also a college environment. 

“It is our hope that Inventrek becomes a place for interaction between students and tenants and a place for studying and recharging.”

Join us for Hydration Station’s grand opening
celebration on Friday, May 20 at Inventrek.
The day will include the following:
10:30 a.m.: Grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony by the Greater Kokomo Chamber of Commerce
Noon: Games in the Inventrek parking lot and a solar car demonstration by Purdue Polytechnic
3 p.m.: Meet and greet with Kokomo Area Career Center students who helped envision and building the eatery’s new space, as well as robot demonstrations by local robotics teams (Kokomo TechnoKats, Northwestern Cyber Tooth and Western Panther Tech).

Expanding walkability

At Inventrek, Hydration Station will also have outdoor seating, which will be a great feature so close the Nickel Plate Trail.

“We hope the outdoor features of our city and the walkability of downtown extend to this area,” Lori Dukes, manager of economic development for Alliance said. “Our objective is to make sure the public is aware of our organization, our building, our tenants and all that is offered to the community amongst us.”

Inventrek is a feature of Kokomo, and through this project and grand opening, we look to expand the awareness of our programs and initiatives as well as to promote our tenants to inspire new.

Alliance engages KACC in workforce development efforts

Kokomo Area Career Center woodworking students fabricated cabinets, tabletops and countertops for the Hydration Station eatery inside Inventrek Tech Park.

Lori Dukes, manager of economic development for Alliance, was intentional when it came to how Hydration Station’s lobby space inside Inventrek Tech Park was created.

She used the project to showcase the Alliance’s workforce development efforts. Because the Alliance understands the importance of developing programs and initiatives to engage our youth in meaningful projects, Dukes partnered with the Kokomo Area Career Center to create the lobby space.

Multiple programs within KACC — including welding, woodworking and architecture — worked together to identify and execute a design plan. 

The other advantage to creating the plan for the space with students is that it ensures it appeals to young people.

“Inventrek plans to partner with KACC on future projects to continue the momentum of developing our workforce through economic development,” Dukes said.

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