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City says it will seek expressions of interest for new operator
BeaverTails pastry kiosk has left Bannerman Park, where it operated a concession stand in a city building during the summer and when The Loop skating venue was open in winter.
“Oh my God, that’s really too bad,” said Dale Rendell of St. John’s, who was walking her bluetick coonhound, Blue, in the park Wednesday morning.
Although a frequent park user, Rendell hadn’t noticed the signs were all gone, but had purchased hot chocolate at the canteen many times in past seasons, she said.
The pastry shop had been expected by many patrons to reopen, as it has every winter, in the new year.
A city spokeswoman said BeaverTails left on its own, in the fall.
“I wonder if someone will take it over?” asked Victoria White, who was skating Wednesday.
White takes her grandchildren skating at The Loop in winter and to the splash pad in summer, and bought refreshments at the BeaverTails kiosk. She noted if you’re skating and want a quick warm-up, you now have to take your skates off and walk to a coffee shop on Military Road, so The Loop-side canteen was ideal.
Bill Rose, who hits The Loop early in the morning, said the canteen wasn’t open for the early skaters, but suggested if someone does reopen the stand, they cater to different hours.
Bill Morrissey and Sandy Veronka, meanwhile, bring their own green tea and water to the park, so weren’t looking for a warm beverage.
Andrew Morrow, who is visiting from Winnipeg but is originally from St. John’s, said he would also like to see the canteen reopen for refreshments.
BeaverTails is a national chain that originated in Ottawa, but has franchises in other provinces. According to its online map, the nearest one is a truck in Cape Breton, N.S.
A representative of the former local franchise declined comment on the situation, but indicated Newfoundland and Labrador’s unstable weather conditions didn’t help the financial viability of the kiosk.
The city said it will seek expressions of interest for a new operator in the near future.