Spilling the Beans on Joshua Rivero, Owner, Fika Coffee House

Spilling the Beans on Joshua Rivero, Owner, Fika Coffee House
Posted on 01/29/2024

Joshua Rivero was born in California and spent his younger years in Vermont. His family then moved to Colorado and New Mexico before returning back to Colorado. Frequent moves didn’t provide a strong foundation for school, but he says things took a positive turn when his family moved to Parker and enrolled at Ponderosa High School. Principal Dr. Bill Larson helped him regain his focus on school and apply himself. Rivero credits Dr. Larson for helping him graduate in 1990. 

After graduating from Ponderosa, Rivero attended Metropolitan State College of Denver. To help pay for school, he worked at the Boiler Room on campus. There he found his passion.

The inside of Fika coffee house featuring a Cappuccino, espresso, latte wall decoration and a table for cream and sugar

“I realized how much I enjoyed putting a smile on someone’s face,” Rivero said. 

Over the next 16 years, he tended bar, managed a bar, and was a bike messenger. In the process, he also met his wife, Anna, a Swede and fellow student. Rivero ultimately traded studying history for learning the bar and restaurant business.

The outside of Fika CoffeeAfter a couple of years living in Sweden, Rivero and his wife decided they wanted to return to the U.S., and specifically, Parker, to raise their children in the Douglas County School District. On the way to work Rivero would frequent a coffee shop on Mainstreet in Parker. He liked the coffee and the vibe of the shop. Little did he know that someday he would purchase that business. 

It was April 2008 when Rivero bought Twenty Mile Coffee and later renamed it Fika Coffee House. Fika is Swedish for “to converse over coffee.” In Sweden, you don’t grab coffee and go - you enjoy coffee over conversation. 

The interior of Fika coffee house

A lot of people have caught on. On a recent morning at Fika, a regular comes through the door and calls out, “Mindy!” Mindy, the barista, has been there for eight years. A second Fika Coffee House is located nearby in the Idyllwilde neighborhood.

Nearly everyone employed at Fika is a DCSD graduate, and two DCSD students work there now. Those who apply at Fika must prepare a unique cover letter and include a resume, even if it only lists your chores at home. Joshua says his number one asset is his staff! He encourages everyone to work in the bar and restaurant business at some point, as it’s a wonderful training ground. 

“If there’s something you love, find a job or career that involves that,” Rivero said. 

Joshua Rivero behind the register at Fika Coffee House

Rivero’s children will graduate from Legend High School in the next few years. He has been involved in the DCSD community, serving on the School Advisory Committee (SAC) at his children’s elementary school and chaperoning field trips. 

Rivero is a Parker Town Council member, a position he’s held for 11 years. He won re-election in November 2022. He enjoys educating residents about how the town functions. Rivero’s hobbies include cycling, hiking, kayaking, golfing, and disc golf.

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