By Trevor Darnell
Listen Up, Lansing staff reporter
The city of Lansing, the capitol of the State of Michigan is one of the nicest places in mid-Michigan to visit and see, with approximately 114,000 residents, according to the United States Census Bureau. With the Capitol Building front of center of the town, it gives residents a nice view and a fun atmosphere for all citizens and visitors.
Seeing this, why do many businesses in the area close and lock their doors in the late afternoon during the week? Many citizens have been asking this question for years and would love to find some answers.
Numerous food businesses in the area close early. A few include Glazed and Confused which closes at 3 p.m., Aladdin’s Express at 4 p.m., Lou and Harry’s at 6 p.m., and Grand Traverse Pie, Zoup, Jersey Giant, and Tom and Chee all closing their doors at 7 p.m.
“I’m in the Lansing area a few times a week and I’ve always wondered why the city is so dead by around 7 p.m. every day. It seems odd for a city with the population of Lansing. It would fun if there would be more things to do at night in Lansing,” said Rob Dullam, a fourth-year student at Michigan State University. “I would definitely come to Lansing more at night if there was more stuff to do.”
If people say that they would continue to eat at these businesses after hours, why don’t they just stay open to make a higher profit? Obviously, it is not that simple.
Aladdin’s Express, a company that has thrived at being a delivery service for a multitude of foods closes its door every day during the week at 4 p.m.
Ahlam Batna, a current worker at Aladdin’s Express, explained why they close at the time they do: “We used to be open until around 9-10 p.m. but never got any customers, so there was really no point in staying open anymore. So our management decided to drop the hours to 4 p.m. That’s really the only reason for it.”
Theresa Farr works at Firehouse Subs, which is one of the few companies in downtown Lansing that stays open until 9 p.m. every day. When asked if Firehouse sees more business after most businesses close she responded, “Honestly we lose business around that time. Business is extremely steady during the day but once everybody goes home from work, everything slows down.”
“We actually reduced our closing time during the week from 10 p.m. to 9 p.m. a while ago because of a lack of customers,” said Farr. “After the dinner rush everything really dies down.”
Some customers see the logic in that.
“I personally believe that a lot of businesses do this because most of the people living in Lansing are done working by five o’ clock and don’t have a need to go out to eat after that point, so why stay open?” said Paul Reed, a current resident in Lansing. “I guess there’s just no business in the area after a certain time.”
Still, others think there is an unmet demand for night eaters out there.
“I eat Aladdin’s all the time,” said Richard Antonelli, a worker in the Lansing area. “I would definitely eat there after 4 o’clock if it were to stay open later; they have good food.”