By Dale McGarrigle
Special to The Weekly
BANGOR, Maine — There’s a good explanation for the two human-sized frogs that have been seen driving around the Bangor area in a green-and-pink Scion.
The frogs are the mascots for sweetFrog Premium Frozen Yogurt, which will open later this month on Stillwater Avenue, located next to Five Guys.
A national chain based in Richmond, Va., sweetFrog soon will have more than 300 franchises throughout the country by the end of this year. The Bangor location is the northernmost in New England; the company has 13 locations in Connecticut and two in Massachusetts.
At sweetFrog, patrons serve themselves, first choosing any (or a combination of) the 60 available flavors (16 at a time, changing regularly) and then applying any number of 70 toppings. The dessert is then weighed at the end, with a price charged per ounce.
Doug and Alison Reed of Hermon, owners of the Bangor franchise, got involved with sweetFrog because of its family-friendly feel, they explained.
The opportunity came about as an indirect result of their work as youth directors at Bangor Baptist Church, Alison recalled.
The Reeds kept track of their former charges through Facebook and noticed that photos of quite a few of those students’ photos had been taken at sweetFrogs across the South. So they took their children, Alexis,14, Brady,11, and Corban, 4, on a family trip, which included a tour of nine sweetFrog locations in Maryland, the District of Columbia and Virginia. Impressed with what they saw, the Reeds visited the chain’s corporate office and became franchise owners.
The couple, who first met at a Christian camp in northern Maine and have been married for 17 years, feel the business is a great fit for them.
“I’ve always been into humanitarian-type work, and Doug has always been in business,” Alison said. “So he can be the numbers guy, and I can build relationships [with the customers].”
The shop will employ approximately 20 people, including the Reeds.
The interior of the Bangor sweetFrog location, which can hold 80 to 85 customers, will have a lime green, pink and nautical blue color scheme, and will feature comfortable sofas and chairs and a gas fireplace, as well as more traditional tables and chairs. There will be various sweetFrog merchandise available as well.
“It’s such a great idea to bring people into a cool place to hang out,” Alison said. “It will reinforce face-to-face communications, instead of communicating through social media and electronics.”
sweetFrog also is available for birthday parties and field trips.
“We want to make it a destination location,” Doug said.
For information, call 207-947-FROG (3764) or visit facebook.com/sweetfrogmaine.