Biz Buzz: Boba tea shop opening in Dubuque; new credit union branch open

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Biz Buzz shares business tidbits from across the tri-state area. This edition highlights developments in Dubuque.

A new boba tea shop is set to open this weekend in Dubuque.

Sun Tea will open on Saturday, Oct. 22, at 4840 Asbury Road, in the same strip mall as Panchero’s Mexican Grill. Sun Tea’s location formerly housed a Subway.

Owner Daven Sun, 18, said the business will be the first place focused on selling boba tea in Dubuque. While other businesses sell teas, he said boba tea — which originated in Taiwan — is differentiated by its gummy tapioca pearls.

“I feel like boba tea is getting more popular everywhere,” Sun said. “And it’s not just Asians who like it. Others are starting to like it, too. I thought it would be a good opportunity to open in Dubuque.”

Sun is from Waterloo, Iowa, and his family owns three restaurants there. He said he started to look for his own place to start a business but did not want to compete with other boba spots in the Waterloo area.

He turned his attention to Dubuque in April, selecting the city for being the center of the tri-state area and for being close to his hometown. Sun since has moved to Dubuque and hired 12 employees.

In June, Sun started renovating Sun Tea’s location. He noted that all of the tables, chairs and counter space were custom made in China.

Sun Tea’s menu features both fruit and milk teas in a variety of flavors. The primary difference between the two is that the milk tea includes nondairy creamer.

“My menu is very customizable,” Sun said. “I don’t have a set drink. I let the customers come in, and they can mix flavors if they want, like a strawberry-mango fruit tea.”

The menu also includes smoothies and snow cones. Sun said all items can come with tapioca pearls, and everything — including the pearls — is made fresh each day.

Sun Tea also will have a rotating menu of desserts in a display case at the front of the store.

“My family has been in the restaurant business since the early 2000s, and I have been working with them,” Sun said. “But I thought boba would be easier than a restaurant. It’s the new trend.”

Sun Tea will be open daily from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. The business can be reached at 563-207-6788 and found on Facebook at

New credit union location open in Dubuque

A new credit union branch has opened its doors in Dubuque.

About one year after work on the site began, GreenState Credit Union opened Monday at 3405 Stoneman Road, near Kennedy Mall. The $7 million project created a new branch to replace the credit union’s location at 1805 John F. Kennedy Road.

“From a facilities standpoint, where we can, we prefer to own versus lease, and we were leasing that (JFK) property,” said Tim Reck, GreenState vice president of facilities. “And there was not quite the amount of space we needed at the other property.”

The new, 7,800-square-foot branch location includes 15 offices and one large conference room that can be divided up into three smaller conference rooms.

About 15 people will work at the credit union location, which will offer a full range of services, from retail, commercial, trust and mortgage services. Drive-thru services also will be available.

Reck added that GreenState Credit Union also acquired Goodman Insurance, 2774 University Ave., and moved those employees to the Stoneman Road building.

“(The new branch) not only gives us room for the existing departments in the branch but also allowed us to bring in the insurance folks, too,” he said.

Reck noted that the branch location opens at a time when other developments are occurring nearby, such as the construction of a new commercial building that will house a juice bar and drive-thru coffee shop among other tenants.

“That whole area where we’re contributing to that energy is exciting for us,” Reck said.

GreenState Credit Union will be open from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to noon Saturday. Drive-thru hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday.