By Jill Fox
School, homework, food, sports, bed.
Parents with children involved in sports know the daily routine all too well. However, something is about to make their busy lifestyles easier: they’ll soon be able to indulge in a convenient and delicious meal while at the city’s sports parks.
According to the City of Parkland, residents have asked for concessions for a long time. Mayor Christine Hunschofsky said there has been a need for it as long as she can remember during the 16 years she has been attending city commission meetings.
Ron Daratany, owner of Sub Zero Nitrogen Ice Cream in Parkland has come to the rescue and will soon be moving his operation from a storefront at Parkland Commons to the concession areas in both Pine Trails and Terramar Park.
Daratany said the parks and recreation department liked the way he ran his store. They also liked that he knew the residents, so they approached him to see if he had an interest in handling the concessions. He loved the idea and took it one step further and said he knew the perfect guy that could be his partner.
He was referring to his good friend, Lou Vitta, who had run the successful concessions area at North Springs Park in Coral Springs for nine years. Recently retired, Daratany convinced him to go back in business to share his expertise.
North Springs Concessions features quality, fresh, made-to-order food. Reviews flood their social media page touting “the best concession stand ever” and “the cheesesteak is awesome, as well as the burgers.” Another fan wrote, “Delicious food! I love it! We always eat dinner here after the boys play!”
The new Parkland concessions will sell a full gamut of menu items – not just snacks.
“This is not just Gatorade and sunflower seeds. We’re going to make it into a restaurant,” he said.
The menu will feature hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken, salads, wraps, and all the other things residents would expect to see. He said to think of it as a small restaurant featuring Sub Zero ice cream.
“Before, you had to have your dinner and then come to Sub Zero. Now we can serve the dinner, and then serve the ice cream,” said Daratany, who wants to make it a nice place to visit with TV’s, and maybe music.
As far as a timeline, they are aiming to open at the beginning of the baseball season March 5. They may have soft openings and gradually increase the menu items, but they want to be open and operational at that time. In the near future, he plans to offer catering for parties, hold fundraisers, and provide take-out options.
Daratany said, “We see it as a viable business. The city is excited about it because they are getting two people who are credible, but we’re excited to be able to bring our product to the people rather than wait for them to come to the store.”
Jill Fox is an Emmy Award-winning writer and producer. She is currently a Senior Account Director at Lon Haber & Co., a leading full-service public relations firm. Fox worked at NBC Miami for eight years after graduating from the University of Miami. She lives in Parkland with her husband, Brian and two children.