Five Marketplace Closings
Another ice cream place, Stucchi's, closed several months ago on South U, and Virginia Hart gave a more vivid account of the store's travails. Hart was behind the counter at the other Stucchi's, the one on State St., owned by Sara and Jim Seta. Ashvin Amin owned the South U Stucchi's (he used to own the State St. franchise too), and he's part of a team that goes back to the old pre-franchise days, when Hart herself was the ice cream maker, the factory was in Saline, and Chris and Dave Fischera owned the company.
Hart says illness forced Amin to close the South U shop. She's behind the counter on State St. because the factory is now up near Lansing. Casey Askar, who also owns Papa Romano's and Mr. Pita, bought Stucchi's in 2008 and moved it there. "I didn't want to move. But they have to keep me on," she says. "If anything ever happens to the factory, I can still make the ice cream."
Wild Bill's Tobacco closed less than a year after it opened. Landlord Walid Dimo (owner of Dimo's Deli and Donuts and the tiny W. Stadium strip where Wild Bill's was located) says: "They signed a five-year lease, and next thing I know, their attorney is calling me and saying they'll be out in three weeks. When they wanted to rent it, the owner told me what a great tenant they would be, yada yada. Against my better judgment I rented to them."