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Soda Shoppe Cafe offers a taste of Mt. Pleasant's past

| Wednesday, May 14, 2014, 9:01 p.m.
Kelly Vernon | The Mt. Pleasant Journal
Hayley Barr, 9, (left) Kya Bowman, 4, and Madalynn Barr, 7, enjoy cotton candy and ice cream at the recently opened Soda Shoppe Cafe on West Main Street in Mt. Pleasant. Photo taken in May 2014
Kelly Vernon | The Mt. Pleasant Journal
Patty Cheek, co-owner of the Soda Shoppe Cafe in Mt. Pleasant, tops off a peanut butter cup milkshake with whipped cream and a cherry. Photo taken in May 2014
Kelly Vernon | The Mt. Pleasant Journal
Drew Bowman, 7, gets in a game of chess while enjoying his ice cream. Photo taken in May 2014

John and Patty Cheek's dream of bringing the nostalgia of an old-fashioned soda shop back to Mt. Pleasant has come to fruition with the recently opened Soda Shoppe Cafe at 509 W. Main St. in the borough.

The business is open from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily, except Wednesday.

“So many people drive through Mt. Pleasant; we want to give them a reason to stop,” John Cheek said. “We would like to help revitalize the town.”

The couple purchased a fountain from a former Pittsburgh pharmacy and had it refurbished for an authentic soda shoppe feel. They also kept a counter from the former Candyland business, which was once located further up West Main Street.

The Cheeks also plan to mount leaded glass mirrors on the walls that were part of the original Rumbaugh Pharmacy, which was housed in the building throughout the early-to-mid 20th century.

In addition, a number of Candyland items, such as signs, a mirror and wooden bench, on loan from the Mt. Pleasant Area Historical Society, have been placed inside the Soda Shoppe Cafe to bring back fond memories of the past.

The couple would like to locate any old photos of the Rumbaugh Pharmacy as well.

Patty Cheek said the cafe's motto is “Where Good Friends Gather.”

Patrons can enjoy games of backgammon and chess while they taste a variety of ice cream, sundaes, pastries, Italian sodas and lattes.

The Soda Shoppe Cafe also serves hand-dipped ice cream.

Chocolate and vanilla are always on hand, however other flavors vary from week to week.

Other flavors will include butter pecan, mint chocolate chip, black cherry, teaberry, as well as children's favorites such as Dinosaur Crunch, along with cotton candy.

Patrons can add a scoop of their favorite ice cream to any pastry for $1.

Sundaes are topped with whipped cream and a cherry.

Children can create their favorite fish food sundae by choosing fruit poppers and Gummy-brand candies with blue Dinosaur Crunch ice cream, whipped cream and cookie crumbs.

Margie Splendore of Mt. Pleasant recently treated her children, William and Olivia, to what she called “a blast from her past” at the business on their way home.

In response, Olivia Splendore said she never before tasted hand-dipped ice cream like that served at the cafe.

William was so impressed he wanted a second milkshake. While he did not get his wish, his mom told him they will make Soda Shoppe Cafe a regular stop.

“This is a real milkshake like I used to get as a child,” Margie Splendore said.

The business also offers more than 24 choices of Italian soda. Vanilla, chocolate and cherry, or any of the flavors can be added to make flavored colas.

Any soda or espresso flavor can be made into a milkshake.

The house special is the Peanut Butter Bliss milkshake.

A variety of pastries, cake, pies and cookies are available daily.

LL Kuhn Catering provides some of the gourmet cakes such as gob cake and cakes with real fruit filling with her special whipped cream icing.

Patrons can pair a specialty-flavored latte with a pastry for an afternoon snack or dessert.

Gourmet hand-cut, homemade potato chips are another specialty.

Wi-Fi is available for customers.

Patrons can check the window for daily specials. Booth and table seating is available for eat-in items. All items can also be made to take out.

The cafe also has a private room for parties and meetings that can seat up to 60 people comfortably.

The business is also equipped with a parking space for the handicapped in front and a handicapped-accessible entrance through the party room to right of main entrance.

“Sip and Paint” event, grand opening are slated

Soda Shoppe Cafe will host a “Sip and Paint” event at 6 p.m. May 29.

The event will feature local artists from Studio PM of Johnstown.

Artists will teach participants to paint a featured picture on canvas during the first session.

The artists will provide the painting materials and the cafe will provide light refreshments.

Those interested in taking part are asked to call 724-610-7368 or stop in the cafe for details and to register for the event.

The grand opening, slated for June 7, will feature musical entertainment and prizes.

For daily specials or upcoming events, visit the Soda Shoppe Cafe on Facebook.

Kelly Vernon is a staff writer with Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-547-5722 or

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