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Sub Boss, Sweet Shoppe Close Their Doors

The two locally owned storefronts along Main Street in East Haven recently closed up shop. What do you think can be done to help strengthen the town's small business sector?

Although East Haven residents are excited about the possibility of a new upscale coffee shop opening up downtown, unfortunately two local eateries are now no longer in business along the town's Main Street corridor.

Sub Boss and the Sweet Shoppe both recently closed their doors.

Although East Haven Patch was unable to reach the two stores' owners yesterday to find out exactly why each closed, neighboring businesses reported that the two shops went out of business within the past few weeks.

Sweet Shoppe

Sweet Shoppe owner Tim Pendred told East Haven Patch in September that his store, which first opened in July 2011, was having "

Local residents rallied behind the struggling store, voting for a cash mob visit in mid-September.

But apparently the effort was not enough to turn things around.

Sub Boss

Sub Boss, owned and operated by lifelong East Haven residents Joe Onorato and Toni Fiorillo, opened its doors in mid-2010.

And it didn't take long for the sandwich shop to become a favorite among local residents.

In fact, earlier this year, Sub Boss was overwhelmingly voted the "Best Sandwich Shop" in town by East Haven Patch readers.

And the new Italian gelato shop Polo Paolo opened up several weeks ago almost right next door to sandwich store, which also found itself in the same group of businesses the ever-popular Sugar Bakery & Sweet Shop.

But again, it appears business was not brisk enough to keep the deli's doors open.

Supporting Small Business

Although there are some bright spots on East Haven's small business landscape — the opening of a new Hobby Lobby early next year in particular — there are still many vacant spaces downtown, along Frontage Road, in the town's industrial park and throughout Foxon's Route 80 corridor.

And so, what do you think can and/or should be done to encourage new businesses to move into town, as well as support and retain current ones?

Earlier this year, the Mayor's Office placed an advertisement in two regional business publications encouraging businesses to relocate to East Haven. What other steps should town officials take to help boost economic development? What role should East Haven residents play in helping to support business in town?

Share your thoughts and ideas in the comments below.

(Editor's Note: East Haven Patch will be meeting with the Art DeSorbo, the director of administration & management for the East Haven Mayor's Office, on Dec. 27 for an economic development update. The story from the talk will post the following day.)

Doreen Boudreau Hausler December 04, 2012 at 09:09 PM
*note: I'm over simplifying my own mention of Walmart, due to not wanting to derail this thread's main topic. Thought it worth mentioning that money talks. Mine won't go to places like Walmart.
Dissolve East Haven December 04, 2012 at 09:57 PM
There is only one solution. Divide the town into four even parcels and sell them off to the srounding towns of North Branford, North Haven, Branford and New Haven. Take East Haven right off the map!
francescafinejewelry December 04, 2012 at 10:15 PM
There's Yankee Cloth in Wallingford and Federal Fabrics in West Haven. You can do a manta.com search and find lots of businesses that are not national chain stores.
Doreen Boudreau Hausler December 04, 2012 at 10:38 PM
Thanks for the info, "frances...". I was unaware of those businesses. I'll definitely look into them for the future. Good to know that they exist. I'll gladly support them in the future.
francescafinejewelry December 04, 2012 at 11:01 PM
You're welcome Doreen. I use manta a lot to find stores that aren't part of chains. It's not always possible to find a business that doesn't outsource. Phones are one. I have yet to find one that keeps everything including manufacturing in the US. But I do try to look first before I buy.
melinda tillie December 04, 2012 at 11:59 PM
I enjoy reading your blogs, Richard. I too lived in EH in the 50's and 60's. Main Street in the 50's was loaded with stores. Everything from Kmetzos and Dairy Queen To Barkers Hardware conerrof Elm, Baltimore Bros Market corner of Taylor Christ Church Dayton's Wolfe's Bakery The Diner corner Kirkham and its too many years to go on. Havent been there in yearsbut I think when they had the chance to renovate Main St. they missed a good chance. Also at that time everything Poliice Fire etc were all in the Center. I lived on Sidney St until 52 then to Vista Dr[in time for the Hurrof 54]and then onto Edward St and then Bartlett Rd. Keep posting Oh yes cannott forget Capitol and Goodies! and Holcombes and Metcalf's. Ill stop.
BOB December 05, 2012 at 12:05 AM
LOL, SO TRUE , SO TRUE
Ann K. Smith December 05, 2012 at 01:47 AM
Wow, I just read 62 comments and now I'm depressed. I can't believe how miserable most of you are. With your attitudes, East Haven will never go anywhere. I believe East Haven has its issues,as all towns do, but as a life long resident I will tell you that I love living here. I have volunteered thousands of hours to the community helping provide a place for our children to go in the spring and summer. What have you done for our town? Instead of pissing and moaning, get out their and make a difference. Talk is cheap. Go start a committee, pick a project and make it happen. It so easy to just sit back and wait for someone else to do the work. You people are sad. Lou, you talk a lot about the class of people. You know nothing about me, in the future, speak for yourself. You have no clue!!
tkp December 05, 2012 at 03:02 AM
when we have garbage cans as flower displays with weeds growing in them no wonder why anyone wants to walk down Main St. Get rid of those planters,they are an eyesore to everyone
Lou December 05, 2012 at 04:35 AM
Ann K Smith why are u singling me out? There are others here that posted the same thing about the classes in EH. I have no clue? I didn't single u out as a classless person. Why do u assume I am talking about u? Must be guilty of something!
ASmith December 05, 2012 at 04:54 AM
the reps and Messina, then the dems took over with Proto and they finished the job. Yup, was a lot of pushin and shovin back then. folks wanted main street to stay the way it was and jes do rehabilitatin other folks wanted redevelopment. they knocked it all down, put in stop and shop put in Tucker park and apartments. called it progress. kill the center o the burg. the old days the burg looked like Branford, but folks in branford decided to rehabilitat and now theys knows they made the right decision and east haven folks the wrong one. interestin for the patch to do before and after photos. sure the historical folks gots photos. center was a two lanes buildins on both sides. main street had nice character ended at route 1 with the twin pines market and the old mill country store. with holcombs drug store and that there soda fountain and gift haven and the scobies ice cream parlor. had a dress store and lots of other shops. then the big developers came to town flashin the cash. they wanted a big supermarket plaza in the center of town and a high rise senior housin complex and new apartment buildings and chop chop chop, all the character was gone. and the developers went home happy. same thing in momauguin. developers came in flashin cash and now we gots no beachfront but lots of condos. what killed east haven. zoning, crooked politicians, and apathy. folks dont care.
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Flowers December 05, 2012 at 01:19 PM
Small businesses are dying every where. They offer limited selection, high prices and stale and out dated merchandise. This isn't an East Haven problem , although that mall on Main Street is ill conceived and uninviting. How many more "Nail" shops do we need? I do enjoy seeing how all these blogs degenerate into name calling sessions.
Lise Cavallaro December 05, 2012 at 01:26 PM
Well Lou, I don't know what class you are referring to, but all the people I know are hard working middle class people who don't want to do their shopping in dollar stores and Pay Half.
Lou December 05, 2012 at 02:51 PM
Lise it is quite obvious that the dynamics of the towns population are changing. You can't tell me you don't see it. When I moved here 13 years ago the town was made up of hard working middle class people. Over the past 13 years, I have noticed that the hard working middle class dynamic is shrinking.
Gene Ruocco December 05, 2012 at 02:52 PM
Sam, so the Town of East Haven puts out its Town Council Agenda with very little Business on it for last night’s meeting (December 4, 2012). The crowd stays home and then at the end of the meeting the Town Attorney makes a motion to add an agenda item. Which is to introduce the Architect for 200 Tyler Street (The Old High School) and to procure the money to pay his bill? Without every going to the BOF for approval, $34,000 of tax payers money, not bad right. What will it take for the people of our town to get upset with this administration? Maybe the lack of transparency is the reason company’s stay away of this town
Karma December 05, 2012 at 03:02 PM
Lou, You're only guilty of telling the truth. Some people in East Haven think there's nothing wrong, for example, for the women to be walking around town in pajama bottoms, frizzed out overtreated hair, fake nails, loudly running their mouths about their horrible kids, into an i-phone that seems to be superglued to both the hand and the ear. The men are no better. Pot bellies, asscracks showing and 3 or 4 days worth of facial growth is the norm. A rundown Main Street shopping district populated by clowns and neanderthals. No class whatsoever. And they wonder why the kids want to get up and leave East Haven as soon as they can..
francescafinejewelry December 05, 2012 at 03:09 PM
"Small businesses are dying every where. They offer limited selection, high prices and stale and out dated merchandise." That is simply not true at all. You're lumping the corner mom and pop food store to every small business. There are small businesses on the internet as well as locally. As for cost, you are paying for junk when you shop at many chain stores. You will not find any chain store, including the most upscale chain stores, that sell jewelry with Grade A, AA, and AAA gemstones. Many jewelry stores don't even sell jewelry with graded gemstones. I do. All my gemstones are graded. I also acquire them in NYC and not overseas. The gold used is ethically mined. I don't use blood diamonds. I make the jewelry or use casters who are in the US. But people would rather buy junk at Walmart that is imported from China. I make and carry a men's 14k white gold chain that is priced lower than anywhere else. It is longer and thicker too. I live in Morris Cove and my store is online. My friend has an online children's clothing boutique with the best names. The clothing is high quality. We are out there.
Michelle Petroccio December 05, 2012 at 03:11 PM
Perhaps if businesses like Subway didn't have two locations so close together in town (like the one that opened recently near Stop & Shop), Sub Boss would have had more opportunity to stay open.
francescafinejewelry December 05, 2012 at 03:15 PM
I agree with you 100%. Also, if towns want small businesses to stay, then they need to regulate how many chains come in. My daughter spent a summer working in Martha's Vineyard. They don't allow chain stores in and the small businesses thrive.
Karma December 05, 2012 at 03:56 PM
The old money clans on the Vineyard and elsewhere know how to keep the money circulating in their little corners of the world. Forward thinking leadership in charge of planning and zoning kept the chainstore garbage out. Elsewhere, years of crooked politicians sought nothing more than to stuff a few dollars into their own pockets, with no thought to the longterm ramifications. One community pospers, the other dies out. Cause, effect...
Lise Cavallaro December 05, 2012 at 04:17 PM
That is true. However, the one mistake Sub Boss did make was they weren't open late, so if you wanted to pick up dinner on the way home, they weren't open.
Lise Cavallaro December 05, 2012 at 04:18 PM
Karma, People that look like that exist everywhere. Not just East Haven.
Rosie December 05, 2012 at 04:42 PM
Very true, Lise. Our family tried several times to go there, even on a sunday to pick up something, and they were always closed. Even when they were supposed to be open. No way to run a business...it takes sacrifice and committment to stay. If that means giving up sunday family time, so be it, that is the price you pay to get a business up and running. I was never able to try it, so I really don't know if I missed anything. Personally, I still prefer subway...
noname December 05, 2012 at 07:59 PM
In the center of Branford was a very going business called Cohen's Bagel...they were always busy with people sitting at the tables as well as those going in and out with bags of bagels. Was I surprised and disappointed to find that this summer they closed. Don't know the reason but the Cohen's main store still remains in Madison. However, no true bagels anywhere around to be found. Yes, some coffee place around here make their own...horrible...it's just bread but not a true bagel! So it happens in every town and I don't feel it's about the people..seems more like a raise in rent since taxes have also gone up.
Greg Tart December 06, 2012 at 02:51 AM
Don't forget the 250 million to Yale to develop business incubators for budding young millionaire democrat donors
Greg Tart December 06, 2012 at 02:53 AM
And don't forget the Friday special- Free Wisconsin License plates
Bruce December 06, 2012 at 04:10 AM
Ever check the prices in both of these stores? Jennifers Ice Cream does very well.
italian December 07, 2012 at 03:45 AM
karma,pawn shop and check cashing bring in those bad people so i say no to that 1 sorry sir..but cant have that in east haven....bad people from all over will come here..
Julie Weisberg (Editor) December 07, 2012 at 06:25 PM
Everyone: I just wanted to let you all know that my interview with Mr DeSorbo for the next economic development update was moved to Dec. 27 by the Mayor's Office. So, that means the next update will be posted on Dec. 28. Just wanted to pass that along.

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