There’s a new dining option coming to town, and it has students’ mouths watering. Andrew Breting, a Castleton graduate, is opening a pizza shop called “Third Place Pizzeria” that will be within walking distance of campus.
Not only will the restaurant serve pizza, but the menu will be chock-full of tasty creations available at any time of the day. Breting plans to include options like specialty burgers, fried food, fresh salads, sandwiches, wraps and gluten-free options; but that’s only the beginning.
“There is gonna be some crazy wacky things on the menu. There's gonna be a burger between two donuts, a bacon wrapped grilled cheese…I don’t want to give it all away, but it's going to be a unique menu,” Breting said with a huge smile.
He plans to have daily specials as well.
“We will also have a suggestion box where people can come up with their own creation to be ran as a special, and we’ll even name it after you too,” Breting said.
On top of all that, “Third Place Pizzeria” will be the only restaurant in town that delivers. Breting knows that people in small towns don't usually have the luxury of delivery, so he wants to bring that to the community of Castleton.
As far as the name is concerned, Breting says that the title of his restaurant actually comes from a sociological idea, and doesn’t literally mean it’s “3rd place pizza.”
“First place is where you spend most of your time in your life, second place is work, and third place is a spot in the community where you can gather and have relationships with people in the town, so my whole motto is bringing the town together,” Breting said.
His goal is to be able to stay open as late as 2 a.m., but if he doesn’t get approved for that, he would settle for sometime around 12 a.m. instead.
Breting is pushing for late hours because he wants students who’ve had too much to drink to be able to get food without driving anywhere. He doesn’t intend for it to be a rowdy late night hangout for college kids.
“That’s the whole aspect of this: kids are kids. They’re gonna drive after a couple drinks to go to Denny’s because that’s the only place open late,” he said. “If I can stop somebody from getting in the car after a drink, it doesn't matter how much money I make, I’m winning right there.”
John Rehlen, owner of multiple Castleton businesses and restaurants, expresses his concerns about it staying open too late.
“I don't think as a resident on Main Street I would be crazy about it staying open until 2 a.m. Not as a business person, but rather as a resident,” Rehlen said. “Having people milling around, or cars coming and going, particularly during the summer time, I think 12 a.m. or 11 p.m. will probably be better. But that’s just my residence opinion.”
Students and professors on the other hand, are extremely excited to hear that there will be another food option in town.
Taylor Peters, a senior sports administration major, was ecstatic to hear the news.
“I didn’t really know that we were gonna have a new pizza place. I thought it was gonna be a remodeled ‘Paul’s Pizza,’ but having a new place right in town that’s delivering is huge,” Peters said. “I kind of wish I wasn't graduating because that would be amazing for late night munchies.”
Lawrence Hathaway, a junior art major, was overwhelmed with excitement when he heard the new restaurant would be delivering.
“DELIVERY!?!?! WOO HOO!! I cannot wait until this place opens up because there’s nowhere that delivers, and they fact that they will be delivering to campus? Everyone’s going to order from there,” Hathaway said in a joyous tone.
Professor Jessica Cowden is so thrilled about it, she’s even got one of her classes pitching advertisement ideas to Breting. She is teaching a special topics in public relations course on branding this semester, and wanted to give her students a real-life example of what it’s like to develop a brand from start to finish.
“I’ve been helping Andrew out a bit in my spare time anyhow, so it seemed like the perfect opportunity,” Cowden said.
Members of the class interviewed Breting to get the perfect idea of what his vision is, and their job now is to bring that vision to life. Students will design everything from menu layouts, logos and business cards, to possible commercial scripts or even an actual mock commercial.
“We have divided the class into two groups who are each developing a unique brand for the pizzeria…the idea is that we are acting like a branding firm and we will pitch our ideas to Andrew,” she said.
Vincent Tatro, junior double major in communication and theatre, and a member of Cowden’s branding class, enjoys working with Breting and is thrilled to hear that good affordable dining is coming to town.
“I’m excited…I think it’s stupid that places around here don’t deliver and pizza is so expensive. Being a college student, I can’t just drop $4 on one slice of pizza, and that’s about the cost at fireside,” Tatro said.
If all goes as planned, Breting hopes for the shop to be up and running by late March or early April of 2017.