The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

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November 16, 2012

Top 10 of 2012 | Frozen yogurt franchise to open Richland location

JOHNSTOWN — Johnstown is about to be introduced to a cool new shop opening early next year at Richland Town Centre.

Sweet Frog Premium Frozen Yogurt, based in Richmond, Va., will occupy an empty spot in the outbuilding that includes Five Guys Burgers and Fries and Starbucks.

The popular yogurt chain has hundreds of shops in several states. The nearest franchise to Johnstown is in Hagerstown, Md.

According to Andrew Ulrich, marketing director for Sweet Frog, the new shop is expected to open March 1.

Ulrich, who will be relocated to Johns­town from Lynchburg, Va., to get the shop up and running, said the new shop’s location was meant to be.

“We stumbled on Johnstown accidently,” he said.

Ulrich was in the area for a meeting with a manager from Johnstown-based Galliker’s Dairy to develop new yogurt flavors. Sweet Frog uses Galliker’s products in its yogurt.

The Galliker’s executive suggested to Ulrich that he set up a shop in Johnstown.

“I saw the perfect plaza for it,” Ulrich said, adding that having a college nearby was a big plus.

He described Sweet Frog as a self-serve frozen yogurt shop where customers “grab a cup and fill it up” with several yogurt flavor options.

“A lot of our flavors are low fat or no fat,” Ulrich said. “And we have sugar free for those who are diabetic. We want it to be delicious but also healthy for you as well.”

Dozens of different toppings can be added. “You can pretty much build your dream,” Ulrich said.

The treat is then weighed and customers are charged 39 cents an ounce.

Ulrich said Sweet Frog is more than just a place to grab something to eat.

“It isn’t just yogurt, it’s an experience. You’re going to a new and exciting place and you’re having fun.”

Started in 2009, Sweet Frog has seen “explosive growth,” Ulrich said. A Christian-based business, FROG stands for Fully Rely On God.

Ulrich said he plans to hire about 15 people and eventually will be hiring managers as well.

“We will announce information on hiring on our Facebook page so ‘like’ us – Sweet Frog Johnstown,” Ulrich said.

The Virginia man is excited about starting the new shop.

“I really think this is going to be a hot spot for Johnstown,” he said.

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