Carpe Diem Coffee Shop celebrates 20 years in downtown Canton

Owners Cathy & Patrick Wyatt began their coffee journey on November 3, 2003; celebration to include donations to local nonprofits

Carpe Diem Coffee Shop, a beloved downtown Canton institution known for its friendly service, delicious refreshments, and a warm, inviting atmosphere, celebrates its 20th birthday on November 3, 2023.

Owners Cathy and Patrick Wyatt initially fell in love with the space that would become Carpe Diem when close friends Jenny and Steve Coon showed the couple the renovations underway in the building.

“I remember when we would visit to see the progress—the layout just screamed ‘cozy coffee shop’,” Cathy Wyatt said. “At one point, Patrick even called a national chain to tell them about the spot.”

The chain said no, but the Wyatts said yes.

“Honestly, the biggest hurdle we encountered was getting people to understand why we wanted to take on this endeavor. Banks and other officials tried to talk us out of it,” Cathy said.

Ten weeks later they opened the doors to Carpe Diem.

“We caught the downtown Canton fever from the Coon’s. Their passion for downtown helped us become true believers in this community,” Patrick said.

The past two years have been the most successful yet for the shop, a boon the couple attributes to visitors and events at Centennial Plaza, the Double Tree Hotel, and the nearby Historic Onesto, along with tourism growth through activities like Canton Food Tours.

The increase in downtown living—the Wyatts moved to the Onesto themselves eight years ago—has also contributed to their growth.

“We are right in the middle of all the action downtown. I like to tease people and say that Carpe Diem is a 20-year-long overnight sensation!” Patrick said.

The couple is excited about the future of the coffee shop and is looking forward to what the city will bring to its doors next.

“We have spent the past 20 years pouring love and appreciation into this shop and making hundreds of friends along the way. We consider those friendships to be a better reward than profits. We feel privileged that people share their lives with us and let us serve them day after day,” Cathy said.

In addition to their work at the shop, Cathy and Patrick both serve as community leaders. Cathy serves on the boards of the Canton Palace Theatre, The Women’s Board of Aultman Hospital, and Women’s Impact of Stark County.

Patrick currently works for the Pro Football Hall of Fame as Operations Manager for Centennial Plaza, as well as a board member of Friends of Canton Parks & Recreation and Canton City Health Department. The couple has been married 41 years and have two children.

From November 1-4, Carpe Diem will give back to the community that has supported it for the past 20 years by donating 20% of profits daily to local nonprofit organizations.

“Our customers can stop in for their favorite coffee, and a portion of the proceeds will go to some outstanding local charities,” said Wyatt.

20% of the profits from Nov. 1-4 will be split evenly among Children’s Network of Stark County, Project Rebuild, St John’s Samaritans Table, and Stark County Hunger Task Force.

In addition, the Wyatts will host a celebratory open house on Friday, November 3, during Canton First Friday, and Saturday, November 4.

Guests who visit during the anniversary can expect themed anniversary drinks. The shop will offer for sale anniversary mugs, t-shirts, and a custom anniversary coffee roast, available in one-pound bags (whole bean or freshly ground).