At the Vibe Lab’s opening, Noemi Imbach and other children had a place to express their creativity. Richard Walker /Kitsap News Group

Poulsbo gets a taste of Vibe

Coworking ‘lab’ opens, full-scale site expected to open in spring

POULSBO — A day at Vibe Coworks on 8th Avenue in Poulsbo may not be exactly like this. But it might be close.

At the Vibe Lab, forerunner to Vibe Coworks being built next door, people visited Oct. 12 and sampled food and drink from ChocMo, Pho T&N, Punjab Indian Cuisine, Taqueria El Huarache, and Western Red Brewing as artists Cory Anderson and Joshua Fisher chatted with guests about their artwork that enlivened the workspaces.

Paul Smyth and his daughter-in-law, Marianna Smyth, talked about the cribbage tournaments and putting green for disc golf at their newly opened 9,000-square-foot Western Red Brewing and Taproom on Jensen Way.

Photographer Jefté Sánchez was busy documenting the gathering.

Nick Johnson of Cima Creative explained how he developed the dinosaur in a business suit for Vibe Coworks’ promotional materials (“Ready for something different? So are we”), and why he became one of the first 40 people to sign up for co-working space at Vibe. He could work at home, alone with his ideas, he said, or he could be around other creatives, where people might share ideas and draw inspiration from others.

Vibe was born out of such collaborative energy.

Peter Crabtree, whose project as a West Sound Academy student 12 years ago gave birth to ChocMo chocolate bistro, talked about how the co-working/gathering place under construction emerged from separate discussions he and his cousin, Alanna Imbach, Vibe’s co-founder, had had with their grandfather, developer Tim Ryan. Crabtree wanted a larger location for ChocMo. Imbach wanted to create a shared working space that would be a hub for great connections to happen. Ryan was considering development options for the site, which he owns. Ryan had the cousins meet, and the project was born.

When completed, the site will be home to Vibe Coworks, Crabtree Kitchen + Bar, ChocMo, and High Spirits. At 5,846 square feet, Vibe Coworks is expected to be the largest coworking space on the Kitsap Peninsula when it opens in spring 2018. It will feature conference rooms, private offices, individual phone/video conference booths, flexible event space, lockers, a coffee shop-style community kitchen, and an outdoor balcony looking out toward Centennial Park and the south fork of Dogfish Creek.

Coworking space is defined as membership-based workspaces where diverse groups of freelancers, remote workers, and other independent professionals work together in a shared, communal setting.

According to Entrepreneur magazine, research shows that people who use coworking spaces “are more effective due to the energy and mindset adjustment that is generated by the interaction and accountability a coworking environment creates.” In addition, “the financial costs of using a coworking space are much lower …” Vibe operates on a membership basis, with memberships ranging from $35 per day to $415 per month.

Vibe Lab, at 19307 8th Ave. NE, Suite C, next door to the future home of Vibe Coworks, is a temporary coworking space that offers members a taste of what’s to come: a choice of open workspace, a café-style coworking area, dedicated desks, a community kitchen, standing workspace and a fully-equipped eight-person meeting room. Additional amenities include high-speed internet, a staffed welcome desk, unlimited coffee and tea, print and mail services, and a variety of member events.

Events already on the calendar: BYOL (bring your own lunch), 12:30-1:30 p.m. the first Wednesday of each month; and a presentation, “Health Insurance for Independent Workers,” 3:30-4:30 p.m. Oct. 26. Want to give coworking a try? It’s free from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. the first Friday of each month.

Other coworking spaces in Kitsap: Office XPats in Winslow on Bainbridge Island; and Spark Commons on Bremerton’s Fourth Street.

— Richard Walker is managing editor of Kitsap News Group. Contact him at rwalker@sound publishing.com.

Architect Rice Fergus Miller’s rendering of the front exterior of Vibe Coworks et al.

Architect Rice Fergus Miller’s rendering of the interior of Vibe Coworks.