ShareThis Page
Fox Chapel

O'Hara women reopening vacant Powers Run market

| Monday, Aug. 6, 2018, 10:57 a.m.
CJ’s Kitchen, the Powers Run Road market, will open in September. The market, deli and catering center is the brainchild of neighbors Jodine Downey and Cynthia Morton.
CJ’s Kitchen, the Powers Run Road market, will open in September. The market, deli and catering center is the brainchild of neighbors Jodine Downey and Cynthia Morton.

O’Hara neighbors Cynthia Morton and Jodine Downey are taking over the vacant storefront on the hilltop along Powers Run Road, keeping the best of the longtime former market while adding their own flavor.

They’ve renamed it CJ’s Kitchen and will open the front door in September.

Many longtime residents remember “the milk store” where workers grabbed sandwiches, neighbors ran for necessities and children stopped for candy and ice cream.

“We wanted to continue that tradition for another generation,” Downey said.

The women, who both live near the neighborhood mini-market, plan to keep faith with what local grandparents remember as a community gem.

Lottery tickets, quick pick-up meals, a milk cooler, ice cream, diapers and cough syrup will be available for customers.

The women intend to add their own touches, too. The friends have arranged to sell top-flight Boar’s Head meats and cheeses and choice breads such as Mancini’s and Mediterra. Other local vendors include Glenn’s Custard and Millie’s Homemade Ice Cream. There also will be items created in-house.

“I love to cook and I’m really excited already,” Downey said. “We’ll be providing food for the community.”

Homemade soup, Reuben and Rachel sandwiches, salads and dinner entrees to-go will be available. Downey loves pasta and Italian food but the pair agree variety will be on the menu.

Morton said, “We’ll be an American deli with international influence.”

Their catering will reflect flexibility for the needs of families.

There will be quick breakfasts, school lunches, healthy dinners and even fruit and veggie trays for team snacks. Downey will whip up daily homemade soups and sauces.

For Morton, the store is her chance to use her training and love of botany. She has already planted a large selection of herbs in the flower boxes outside the renovated building.

The new planters are only part of the exterior upgrades at the market. The blue-sided farmhouse was a shell with no electricity, no water and no lighting when the women took over. The owner Steve Tobe began improvements more than a year ago and then everything came to a halt.

“We heard an outcry. People were disappointed,” Morton said. “People really want this store.”

Downey lives just around the corner and said she passed the empty building every day. The women decided to adopt the market to help neighbors while fulfilling themselves and using their talents.

Morton said, “This place has a history in the area. We will cater to the community’s needs.”

Sharon Drake is a freelance writer.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me