Located in the Stop & Shop Plaza at 1095 Kennedy Road in Windsor, Menchie’s offers more than a dozen ever-changing flavors of self-serve frozen yogurt: from mango and mocha fudge to pineapple and peanut butter brownie. Toppings include sauces and syrups, candies and cookies, fresh fruit and more. In addition to self-serve yogurt, Menchie’s also offers catering, in-store parties and frozen yogurt cakes.
Before opening Menchie’s in 2014, Gloria was a social worker. Seeking a career change, she wanted a business that was straightforward to operate and allowed her to connect with people. “I like working with people, and I had to find something that I believe in, because I can’t sell what I don’t believe,” she says. “Menchie’s is a very simple concept: we make you smile.”
Gloria says the best thing about owning Menchie’s is it keeps her moving around and connecting with customers and employees. “I love my team members, and I don’t like sitting at a desk,” Gloria says. “I’m up and around, not just here at the store, but out in the community. I’ve met a lot of people.”
Gloria describes one of the primary challenges of owning a frozen yogurt franchise in Connecticut: “The weather is always a factor. You can’t control it!” Although she had never run a business before, Gloria says, “I learned very quickly what works and what doesn’t work.” Her husband, Bill, is her business partner; he handles all of the financials while Gloria operates the store. After almost five years at Menchie’s, Gloria has proven she can meet the challenges. “There are way more positives than negatives. You just have to keep moving forward.”
Gloria, an active member of the Windsor Chamber of Commerce, serves on its board of directors. She regularly attends Chamber networking events and frequently partners with other businesses for events and fundraisers. She says her involvement with the Chamber has helped her build her business and create relationships with other local businesses. “The Chamber was very, very instrumental in helping me grow my business.”
Gloria is also an involved member of the Windsor community who works with Windsor Public Schools on events that benefit the schools. “We’ve done art shows, and fundraisers for all the different clubs and sporting events.” As a member of the Rotary Club of Windsor/Windsor Locks, Gloria oversees their Student of the Month program, which recognizes students from Windsor, Windsor Locks and East Granby High Schools for academics and community service.
A lifelong resident of Connecticut, Gloria lives in South Windsor and also works as a lacrosse referee. She loves Windsor because of its diversity. “It’s such a different community. It has people from all walks of life who are very welcoming, warm and genuine, and willing to help you.”
As the temperatures drop, Gloria invites one and all to stop by Menchie’s for a smile and a treat. Currently, Menchie’s is offering a Winter Kid’s cup for $3.99 and a Free Mutt Mix for your pet (with purchase). In March, Menchie’s will celebrate its fifth anniversary, and Gloria looks forward to continuing to be a big part of the Windsor community.
By Aretha Prabawa