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Yogurt shop swirls into Red Wing

CherryBerry general manager Dustin Peterson said he hopes the new yogurt bar will be a place where young people, adults and families will be able to hang out.

CherryBerry, Red Wing's first frozen yogurt bar, officially opened its doors Feb. 8. According to general manager Dustin Peterson, there hasn't been a quiet day so far.

"We've been so busy, people lining the walls," he said.

The biggest rush usually comes between 2:30 and 5 p.m. each day - when high school and middle school students finish up classes.

"It's turned into a hangout for the kids," Peterson said, adding that that is just fine with him.

Having grown up in Ellsworth, Peterson said he's all too aware that the area somewhat lacks a place where younger people can "just sit down" and hang out.

Peterson hopes CherryBerry will provide that. The new yogurt shop -- in addition to the 12 flavors of frozen yogurt and dozens of toppings -- has free Wi-Fi, comfortable couches and two flat-screen TVs.

Peterson has no problem with people just hanging out - even long after their yogurt cups are empty, he said.

But that doesn't mean CherryBerry is just for teens. Adults seem to be flocking to the new shop as well, Peterson said.

"You get four generations of family in here and they can find something they can enjoy," Peterson said.

And, adults might appreciate yogurt's health benefits -- active cultures that help digestion -- more than the younger generation does.

Last Wednesday, Christine Radtke and her husband, Calvin, stopped in to try the new yogurt bar.

"It's fun," Christine said. "I think it will be a great place for younger people and the not-so young. We feel comfortable coming in and sitting down and relaxing."

The shop will generally have 12 separate yogurt flavors on tap. Peterson said he has access to up to about 65 different flavors, and yogurts will rotate in and out of the shop. Peterson said he will announce new flavors on the shop's Facebook page.

Small sample cups are free for the taking; new and returning customers are always welcome to try out any yogurt flavor or topping before they commit to it, Peterson said.

The entire process is self-serve. A customer comes in, grabs a cup and starts piling in yogurt -- in any flavor combination -- and any of the dozens of dry and cut toppings -- which include chocolate, fresh fruit, nuts, candies and more.

The price depends on what goes in the cup - once all the yogurt and toppings are in, the whole thing is weighed. Each ounce costs 45 cents. If you're new to the shop, the employees will walk you through the process.

"It's new. No one knows what it's about," Peterson said. "My whole staff is trained to give tours."

Currently, CherryBerry employs 10 people - mostly high school students, Peterson said.

The Red Wing store is owned by a Fargo, N.D.-based RSM Brands, LLC, who bought the franchise rights to all Minnesota stores. The company's website shows CherryBerry locations in about 20 different states. There are about 30 stores in Minnesota and more are expected to open soon.

The details

What: CherryBerry Yogurt Bar

Where: 3243 S. Service Drive

Hours: 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday-Thursday; 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday; 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sunday

More information: 651-800-2200, CherryBerry Red Wing, MN on Facebook

Sarah Gorvin
Sarah Gorvin has been with the Republican Eagle for two years and covers education, business and crime and courts. She graduated from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities in 2010 with a  journalism degree.
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