After months of planning and a , Red Mango is finally scheduled to open in Millburn today, otherwise known as "Black Friday" because the intense post-Thanksgiving/pre-Christmas shopping rush often pushes businesses into profitability, aka “the black.”
Red Mango owners are calling this day Red Friday to capitalize on what will they hope will be the town’s embrace of the new frozen yogurt store downtown. Dave Rothberg, who owns the Red Mango stores in Summit and Millburn, plans to donate 20 percent of the Millburn store’s proceeds on opening day to the Frank J. Dasti, Sr. Fund. (Dasti, a long time town resident, Little League coach and father of eight, passed away in August at age 55. He was a friend of Rothberg's.)
Rothberg said he is excited to be expanding into Essex County. “We’re going to be a bigger store than Summit,” says Dave Rothberg, who owns the Millburn and Summit stores with his wife, Jen Wiederkehr. “We’ll have six machines instead of five and we’re going to have a bigger toppings bar with more choices, which will hopefully move the line a little bit.”
The Summit Red Mango is 1,250 square feet and the Millburn store will be 1,600 square feet.
The layout of the Millburn Red Mango is different: Millburn Red Mango has booths as well as tables and chairs. Rothberg is bringing over several employees from the Summit store and plans to hire local Millburn high school students in the spring, when business picks up.
“In winter time, there might be two to three people in the store, and in the summer we’ll probably have five to seven people, up to 10 or 15 people,” says Rothberg. “We do have a list of applicants and we would start with high school seniors and give them first crack because they have the most free time and they’re the most responsible.”
Red Mango’s hours will also extend as the weather gets warmer. “We do get a lot of traffic after movies, and as the weather changes, we’re going to try and be one of the last places open in town, “ says Rothberg.
Josh Kessler, 17, a junior at Millburn High School, is also excited about the opening. “I go to the (Summit store) all the time,” says Kessler, who likes the pomegranate yogurt with strawberries, mango and mochi (rice) nuggets. “I usually go on Fridays and Saturdays with my friends. We go to Tito’s Burritos first and then we go there. This will be much more convenient.”