July 25, 2016

Mostly cloudy

Schoolhouse Scoops plans June opening

An ice cream shop at 686 Lafayette Road, Medina, is nearing completion but won't be ready for a grand opening until June. Schoolhouse Scoops will serve hand-dipped and soft-serve ice cream and 4 percent of the gross revenue will go to Medina Schools. (GAZETTE PHOTO BY MICHELLE SPREHE)

MEDINA — Unexpected delays are keeping Schoolhouse Scoops, an ice cream business planned to set up shop in Medina, from opening as planned this month, but it should be ready in time for warmer weather in June.

“The store was closed for a number of years, so I had to bring it up to current code,” business owner Mike Eleo said.

Making sure the facility meets health and operating requirements has stalled the opening, Eleo said.

“It’s one of those things where it’s taken longer than I thought it would and it’s costing more than I thought it would,” he said. “Basically, I have to save up a little money because I don’t want to stretch my budget too much.”

Eleo estimated he has put about $45,000 into the project so far.

Eleo got the green light in October to lease the building at 686 Lafayette Road from the owner, Medina Schools, and bring it back to its glory days as an ice cream shop.

He said he plans to serve hand-dipped and soft-serve ice cream.

“People stop me and they say they’re looking forward to it opening up and they remember it was so nice to have something in the neighborhood to go to,” he said.

The retired special education and math teacher spent 34 years in Medina Schools and still lends his voice to Medina High School as the announcer for football games.

The lease requires Eleo to pay the district $50 a month and 4 percent of his gross revenue, said Jon Burkhart, director or business operations for the district. The $50 and half of the 4 percent will be used for district operating expenses, he said.

The other 2 percent will go to the athletic and music departments, Eleo said. The money will help athletes and music students with the fees they must pay in order to participate in their extracurricular activities.

Eleo also plans to hire high school students to work in the shop.

“It’s nice that the school is working with me,” he said. “It’s a win-win with the schools.”

Even with delays, Eleo has made progress by beginning to install a drive-through window, and adding cement around the building.

In the next couple of weeks, plumbing repairs should be complete, allowing Eleo to finish up the inside of the shop.

In May, the lot is expected to be paved with 17 parking spaces and outdoor lighting, Eleo said.

One obvious change since Eleo has taken over the building is a small tree that was growing inside is gone.

Eleo said he tried to save the tree, but it snapped.

“My plan is hopefully to grow the roots and I if can get that tree to grow again or replace it, I’ll put a bench with it and a little sign,” Eleo said. “We’ll wait and see. It’s a new, fun adventure and I’m looking forward to it.”

Contact Michelle Sprehe at (330) 721-4048 or msprehe@medina-gazette.com.