Sweet Creations Frozen Yogurt Offers Variety, Friendly Atmosphere

Debbie Bankert (in Sweet Creations t-shirt) chats with friends at Thursday's soft opening party. Customers can sit in booths and are invited to sit and stay awhile.

Sweet Creations is the new frozen yogurt bar opening at Bristow Center Friday, April 19. In addition to a friendly atmosphere, the store also offers 55 varieties of toppings and 14 yogurt flavors.

Debbie Bankert, who co-owns the store with her husband Tom and their friends Patrick and Peggy Nelson, said she expects Sweet Creations’ toppings will set them apart.

“We have a lot more toppings and a lot more choices and flavors,” Bankert said. “Our key is really our toppings bar.”

Toppings include fruit poppers, colorful cereals, fruit, granola, cookies, candies and more. Frozen yogurt flavors are varied. Featured flavors this week include mango sherbet, cupcake and salty caramel sea salt pretzel. In addition, customers can choose a brownie or pound cake and top their desserts with syrup or whipped cream.

Bankert is sure the ability for people to design their own treats will make a difference, saying “people want what they want, not just what they’re given.”

Inside the restaurant, the atmosphere is modern and welcoming in tones of gray, orange, green and teal with images of Sweet Creations’ signature trees that appearingin their logo.

Sweet Creations offers 55 varieties of toppings that will change throughout the year.

Alicia Thornton of Rockford Interiors, who designed the frozen yogurt shop, said she, “wanted to make a space that was pretty fun for kids, but adults could also enjoy.”

Bankert said Sweet Creations shares that goal. The Bankerts want their restaurant to be friendly to all age groups, and are thus offering an activity center for toddlers, Nickelodeon programming for children and internet access for teens and adults.

Plus, Bankert is eager to reach out to the community. The business welcomes sports teams, senior groups, and birthday parties, and it plans to hold various contests for tweens and teens.

Being community friendly is part of why Sweet Creations chose to install booths rather than tables.

“We put in booths, because we really want people to come in and stay, to come in and meet one another; that’s what community is about.”

After investing in the first Sweet Creations store in North Carolina, Bankert said that opening the second one in northern Virginia was their way of giving back to their community, where they have lived for almost 30 years.

“We’re both really active and we wanted to do something to give back to the community.” They chose to create a place, they would want to frequent, because “it’s a fun and casual place to be.”

Sweet Creations has 14 flavors and 28 swirled flavor combinations that will rotate between 100 possible flavors.

They chose the Bristow Center location because, Bankert said, they liked the shopping center, and the location was at a “crossroads” between Manassas, Bristow, Nokesville and Gainesville.

“We looked for two years, but this is where we wanted to be. It’s an upscale shopping center. It’s really nice, visibly appealing, and there are good people here. We felt this is where we needed to be,” Bankert said.

At Thursday evening’s soft opening, friends and business people got a chance to see the store and try the frozen yogurt for the first time.

“We love it. I love the fact that it has all the fresh fruit options. It’s a healthy alternative to ice cream, and it’s a fun atmosphere. Plus, you can change it up every time,” said Melissa Layton of Warrenton.

Zachary Cooke of Bealeton also enjoyed the frozen yogurt, saying, “It’s great. The toppings are unique, and you don’t get that variety at Sweet Frog.”

© 2013, Bristow Beat. All rights reserved.

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Category: Bristow Biz, Thought for Food

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