After searcing for more than a year, Scott and Loni Wetzel have found a location for their nonprofit pub Center Public House. They plan to open in the former restaurant Scarlett’s Hideway on Avenue A in Snohomish. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)

After searcing for more than a year, Scott and Loni Wetzel have found a location for their nonprofit pub Center Public House. They plan to open in the former restaurant Scarlett’s Hideway on Avenue A in Snohomish. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)

After long search, public house finds a home in Snohomish

For more than two years, Scott and Loni Wetzel tried and failed to open Center Public House.

Scott and Loni Wetzel were ready to throw in the towel.

For more than two years, the Snohomish couple worked to raise money and prepare a space downtown for their nonprofit pub, Center Public House. But things were starting to fall apart. Donations had dwindled and their hold on the location had timed out.

“There was just nothing happening,” said Scott Wetzel recently over a pint at Fred’s Rivertown Alehouse in downtown Snohomish. “We had a dream that started to get legs and it became a vision. Then folks got behind it and it became kind of a movement. Then it just started to fizzle.”

They’d had no movement on a GoFundMe campaign, and the money from donations wasn’t enough to convince landlords downtown to take a chance on a nonprofit pub.

“We felt strongly about staying in the community that we have here in Snohomish,” Scott said. “There’s something about this town that’s different.”

After facing more rejection, a call came from out of the blue. A couple from their church, Clearview Foursquare, wanted to know if they could back the project. They offered $12,500 and an opportunity to double it if they couldn’t raise enough to lock down a lease.

“They said, ‘We believe in the project,’” said Scott. “I was like, ‘Are you sure?’”

The Wetzels sport T-shirts for Center Public House, a Snohomish pub that will donate profits to charities. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)

The Wetzels sport T-shirts for Center Public House, a Snohomish pub that will donate profits to charities. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)

They still needed a building. A friend tipped them off to a restaurant for sale downtown. Scarlett’s Hideway had the perfect size and location, and all the equipment they’d need, save a tap system. But the owner was selling for a bit more than they could afford.

The Wetzels talked over possiblities with their board, then approached Scarlett’s owner with a counter-offer and not much hope. Surprisingly, she made them a deal: if they could put a certain amount down, she’d carry a side contract with a small interest rate. They had just enough and figured they could raise a little more to install the tap system.

This past week, the Wetzels, who credit their faith for perseverance through the odyssey, finalized the purchase of the restaurant and its equipment, and signed a lease on the space. Center Public House will be a reality.

“We can’t be more thrilled,” Scott said. “Our goal is to bring people together, and we feel this space is perfect for that.”

The pub will be located at 115 Ave. A in Snohomish, and Scott said the goal is to be open by mid-May. They plan to have eight beers on tap at first and a tapas and dessert menu. What makes the pub special is all profits will be donated back into the community.

It was a real turning point last week when the board started taking donation considerations for local charities.

For more information or to donate, visit

Also on this week’s taster tray:

Takk Skal Du Ha, Naked City Brewing/Lazy Boy Brewing: This is the third beer in Naked City’s Decima Series that is celebrating its 10th anniversary all year. The beer is a Nordic-inspired lager made with pilsner and flaked oats, white wheat, rye malt and hopped with Nelson Sauvin, Citra and Sorachi Ace. Available on tap at both breweries.

Offer I Can’t Refuse, At Large Brewing: Four hop blend and 2-row malt and oats makes this hazy IPA a beer you can’t not drink. Available on tap at the brewery.

Vic Secret IPA, Scrappy Punk Brewing: Single-hop IPA brewed with Australian Vic Secret hops, giving it notes of tropical fruit and pine. Available on tap at the brewery.

Eighty Sixed, Justice Brewing/SnoTown Brewing: This collaboration beers is hazy white IPA hopped with Amarillo and Jarrylo. Available in 12-ounce cans at Toggles Bottleshop, Sno-Isle Coop, The Beer Junction and The Hop and Hound.

Helter Spelter/Holy Trinity, Skookum Brewery: Two hazy IPAs, Helter Spelter is brewed with a large amount of spelt and hopped with Citra, El Dorado, Denali and Eureka; Holy Trinity is brewed with kamut and hopped with Citra, Amarillo and Simcoe. Available on tap at the brewery.


Cervoise de Sarah/Schilpario Saison

Spada Farmhouse Brewery, Snohomish

Style: Golden sour/Barrel-aged saison

Stats: 5.8 percent/6 percent ABV

Available: On tap at the brewery/750-ml bottles at the brewery

From the brewery: One of Wetzel’s favorite Snohomish breweries is releasing two special beers this weekend. First, Cervoise de Sarah, the second in the Spada’s Family Oak series, is a barrel-aged golden sour ale with blueberries made in honor of owner John Spada’s sister. Next, bottles of Schilpario Saison, a saison with cherries and raspberries aged in apple-brandy barrels, also has a family connection.

“Located in the mountains of Northern Italy, Schilpario is where the Spada family is originally from,” Spada said. “This beer is an homage to my relatives, and specifically my great grandpa who made it possible for our brewery to exist today.”

Talk to us

More in Life

Beachcombing on London’s riverbank.
Beachcombing through London’s long history

At low tide, the banks of the Thames teem with the flotsam and jetsam of centuries gone by.

Carolyn Cross repairs light strands on a flower christmas light frame at Warm Beach Camp & Conference Center on Tuesday, Oct. 12, 2021 in Stanwood, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
All is merry and bright at Warm Beach

The Lights of Christmas endures as one of Snohomish County’s premier holiday traditions.

Some ways to take care of yourself during the 2021 holidays

This is such a busy time of the year! Here are some… Continue reading

Caption: Family photos like this one of the author’s grandmother give extra meaning to this family’s holiday decorations.
Memories linger like the scent of fake Christmas trees

On this family’s tree, the most important ornaments are framed photos of beloved family, especially the ones who have passed away.

Steve Smith gift ideas for gardeners
Ten gift ideas for gardeners

From puzzles to pruners, how to pick the perfect present for the green thumbs on your list.

Seven gift ideas for weathering the holiday season

Smart thermostats and portable power will be thoughtful presents — especially when energy bills and power outages hit.

Photo Caption: Francois-Xavier Lalanne often used animal motifs in his modern, minimalist sculptures. His porcelain eggcup with a chicken's head, wings and tail sold for $2,080 at Palm Beach Modern Auctions.

(c) 2021 by Cowles Syndicate Inc.
‘Pocillovy’ is the obscure hobby of collecting eggcups

It stems from Victorian times, when nearly every type of food had its own specialized dish and utensils.

Orangebark Stewartia, Stewartia monadelpha,
Great Plant Pick: Orangebark Stewartia

This tree’s stunning bark is shown to perfection when it’s planted with a backdrop of evergreens.

Clockwise from top left: Trinity Yun, Ryan Chung, Carson Chadd and John Meneses.
Orchestra returns with four outstanding young musicians

Pacifica Chamber Orchestra’s first in-person concert since before the pandemic will feature winners of the 2020 Snohomish County Music Teachers Association Competition.

Most Read