New Subway opens at Andover Community Center

The concession stand at the Andover YMCA/Community Center is now offering more than popcorn, hot dogs, nachos and pizza.

Ten-month-old Kendal Erickson of Ramsey takes a big bite out of a Subway cookie. Photos by Eric Hagen

Ten-month-old Kendal Erickson of Ramsey takes a big bite out of a Subway cookie. Photos by Eric Hagen

It still is providing all these things, but it is now serving Subway sandwiches and cookies as well.

Subway franchisee owner Mike DeWeese is leasing the concession stand from the city of Andover. Subway began serving its food the second week of February. It offers the full menu customers would find at any other Subway, including the breakfast menu, and the option to toast your sub. The bread is baked on-site like any other Subway.

Subway’s Mama DeLuca’s Pizza began serving pizza, breadsticks, calzones and boneless wings last week. This is Subway’s 30th Mama DeLuca’s location nationwide and the first in Minnesota.

The concession stand will be regularly open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. on weekdays and from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on weekends, but will stay open longer when tournaments, special events and birthday parties are taking place.

This Mama DeLuca’s is not affiliated with the Mama DeLuca’s in Nowthen, which is owned by Cory DeLuca. He also owns the Mama Valenti’s in Andover and had been selling pizza by the slice at the Andover Community Center’s concession stand from September 2010 through December 2012, according to DeLuca.

DeWeese also owns the Subway across the street from the community center. This location will remain open. In fact, DeWeese said he hired a dozen more employees so he can adequately staff both spaces and there are times when employees will go between the locations. They have been trained on making the Mama DeLuca’s menu items.

The first two weeks the Subway was open in the community center went really well, DeWeese said. Business at the other location slowed down a bit, but with the new location being factored in, sales have increased overall.

Members of the Andover High School dance team try out some free food set out by the Andover YMCA/Community Center concession stand, which now features Subway and its Mama DeLuca’s Pizza menus along with traditional concession stand food like hot dogs and nachos. Photo by Eric Hagen

Members of the Andover High School dance team try out some free food set out by the Andover YMCA/Community Center concession stand, which now features Subway and its Mama DeLuca’s Pizza menus along with traditional concession stand food like hot dogs and nachos. Photo by Eric Hagen

A Subway and the Mama DeLuca’s in the community center is all about convenience, DeWeese said. Customers can pick up a sub after they work out, swing by for a pizza that could be baked on site or they can take one home to bake it.

Erick Sutherland, facility manager of the Andover Community Center portion of the facility that includes the fieldhouse and ice rink, said the first two weeks have been an amazing experience and a positive partnership between the city and Subway.

“From what we’ve heard from our users, everyone is excited about the change and looking forward to a nice future with them,” Sutherland said.

According to statistics shared by Sutherland, there were an average of 1,755 people coming to work out in the YMCA’s space during the months of January and February 2012. During 2010 and 2011, the winter months were typically the busiest months.

This does not include the hockey, dance and volleyball players along with their parents, those stopping by for pick-up basketball games, birthday parties, the North Suburban Home Improvement Show and much more.

Although thousands of people come to the Andover YMCA/Community Center each month, the city has been losing money on the concession stand. Andover City Administrator Jim Dickinson said over the past three years, the concession stand bottom line has ranged from approximately $2,900 in the hole to as much as $6,800 in the hole during an entire year.

With Subway coming in, the city no longer has to operate the concession stand and instead gets revenue from leasing it. The staff now has more time to focus on bringing in more activities to the fieldhouse and ice arena during off-peak times, Dickinson said.

The Subway menu also offers healthy options previously not available, he said.

Sutherland said DeWeese approached him about the possibility of leasing the concession stand space at the community center in August 2012.

DeWeese said he already has a Subway in the Maplewood Community Center and he was doing some advertising at Andover Community Center’s ice rink, so he approached Sutherland about leasing the space.

Sutherland said Dickinson got involved and shared monthly expense reports and both sides negotiated lease terms. Final lease terms were completed and then voted on by the council at the Oct. 2, 2012 meeting.

Eric Hagen is at eric.hagen@ecm-inc.com

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