Well, it's official. Our little transitional neighborhood has truly transitioned. The locals are up-in-arms over the opening of a new bar/restaurant called "Wine-O" in a space that used to be a windowless old neighborhood bar. They had a soft opening last week and apparently some people arrived in a limo, so the granola residents are squawking about this on the blog forums. "New people! Ruining our neighborhood! Oh, the humanity!"
But that is nothing compared to the furor over the future opening a couple of blocks away: A Rita's Water-Ice franchise. For those of you "not from da neighborhood", a water ice is a local variation of Italian Ice, a frozen dessert made by mixing flavorings (typically fruit juices but also coffee and chocolate) with ice. Rita's also serves gelati and frozen custard. Here's the wiki entry for Rita's:
Rita's was founded in 1984 by Bob Tumolo with his mother's recipe for Italian ice. By 1987 a second store was opened and by 1989 the family decided to franchise their business. Today there are over 500 locations and can be found in 14 different states, including Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia as well as the District of Columbia. In May, 2005 Rita's was bought by the Pittsburgh based McKnight Capitol Partners. In April, 2007 Rita's moved its Bensalem headquarters to the Trevose section of Bensalem Township.
As a tradition to kick off the "Water Ice Season" of the Spring and Summer months, Rita's Water Ice gives out a free regular sized water ice on the first day of Spring.
Honestly, you'd think that this place was offering free how-to lessons in drug-dealing for children the way the people are stirred up about it. I suppose that it is really the first time that a chain store has located in our little former working class-hippy-artist community, so people are mourning the loss of innocence. I mean, we don't even have a Starbucks yet. And the neighborhood still screens free movies outside during the summer.
But I know one person who will be happy when Rita's opens - Gary is a big fan of their cherry water ice.
[And only two blocks away.]
SAVE YOUR CORKS!!
[Only 3,538 more needed for our Wine Cellar Wall.]
Quote du jour:
"The best real-estate investments with the highest yields are in working-class neighborhoods, because fancy properties are overpriced."
Jane Bryant Quinn (1939 - ____) US journalist
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