Happy’s Pizza will open its doors to Mount Pleasant today.
The restaurant plans to hire around 40 new employees at the 1218 S. Mission St. location, Manager Beau Bashi said. Apart from providing new jobs for the city, Happy’s plans to become highly involved in the community and with the people of Mount Pleasant, he said.
“We thought, you know, it’s a college town, there’s a lot of business here, and it’s a nice area,” Bashi said. “We felt confident that we could do well out here and try to help the community out as well.”
The location will be the first of its kind to include a bar, Bashi previously told Central Michigan Life.
“We’re trying to create a nice atmosphere for people, and, like I said, we want to be involved with the town and with the community,” he said. “We’d like to host charity events, partner with the schools and organizations like the Special Olympics and that kind of thing.”
With the amount of bars and pizza joints throughout the city, some have raised concerns as to whether the business will flourish.
“Time will tell,” said Jeff O’Connell, manager at Cottage Inn Pizza, 1639 E. Broomfield. “Pizza One didn’t last long, but Happy’s is in a good location, they’ve got a larger menu, and they’re serving alcohol, along with being open later.”
While Cottage Inn acknowledges Happy’s will be competition, they are not worried about their loyal customers, he said.
“We knew (Happy’s was) coming, and we welcome them,” O’Connell said. “It’ll be interesting to have some late-night competition, as they’re one of the only other places open as late as we are. But I think we’ll do fine no matter what.”
Karley Segula said she is looking forward to the restaurant opening in Mount Pleasant.
“I used to work at the Happy’s Pizza in Battle Creek, and I loved it,” the Battle Creek freshman said.
Middleville freshman Mac Gaikema said Happy’s might struggle in the face of so much competition.
“I personally think they will struggle because there are so many pizza places in this town already,” Gaikema said. “I will probably go there at least once to see how it is.”
Midland sophomore Dani Cowles said she has been to Happy’s before, and, while the pizza was inexpensive, it was not memorable for her.
“If I remember correctly, they were pretty cheap, which might attract college students, but their pizza wasn’t anything special,” she said.