Vacation inspires new frozen yogurt business

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By Lindsay Hedgecock
Lansing Star staff writer

 

Inspired by a vacation to California, Ann Nguyen decided to open a frozen yogurt shop in Lansing.

Nguyen, owner of Sugar Berry Frozen Yogurt, at 3201 E Grand River Ave., had considered opening a frozen yogurt shop for a few year.  Then, a few months ago, she decided “why not” and opened up Sugar Berry on Nov. 15, 2010.

“It’s a healthy treat, people don’t have to worry about the calories and it has a ton of health benefits,” said Nguyen.

Health benefits include an increase in endurance, lower cholesterol, improved immune system and digestion, it also reduces risk of cancer and clears skin, said Nguyen.

Sugar Berry is self-served with more than ten flavors of frozen yogurt to choose from and includes a variety of toppings from Nerds to fresh fruit.

“We have a variety of flavors, I change them all the time when people give me suggestions,” said Nguyen. “I try and keep a variety going. I was nervous about trying this taro flavor, but everybody went gaga for it. I ran out of it quickly, so I’m getting a double order of it next time.”

Nguyen said she is typically at the grocery store three or four times a week looking at the fresh fruit selections

“It’s a great place to come, the yogurts healthy,” said Emily Hosek, a Sugar Berry employee and Baker College student. “depending on the toppings people put on it.”

Sugar Berry’s hours are Sunday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Benefits of having late hours is getting people who get out of work or school after dinner time said Nguyen “we get pretty crazy up till 10, sometimes even after 10.”

“I like what the owner has done with the place,” said Lauren White, a student at Michigan State University. “The frozen yogurt is delicious and I like the employees. They are really friendly and they don’t hover over you.”

A lot of times people feel that there is nothing to do; they can come hang out and eat frozen yogurt here. It’s an alternative to the coffee shops, said Nguyen.

“It’s a cheery, fun place for all ages, people can come in and have fun, we have free Wi-Fi so people can come do homework,” said Nguyen.

White has visited to several of the frozen yogurt shops around Lansing in the past year, but says she enjoys Sugar Berry the most because of “the upbeat and relaxed atmosphere.”

“As soon as you walk in the atmosphere is going to catch you,” said Nguyen. “People are amazed at what I’ve done, I’m so happy when I see customers come in and their eyes open and they’re like oh my god.”

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