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Wild for yogurt

Marie Havenga • Jul 21, 2015 at 1:29 PM

After seeing self-serve frozen yogurt and topping bars in other areas of the country, Don and Marina Knebl and Jim and Chris Wadaga teamed up to open Wild Blue Frozen Yogurt on Beacon Boulevard, next to Subway.

Don and Jim, who previously worked together at Donnelly Corp. in Grand Haven, meet for breakfast once a month with other former Donnelly employees. During one breakfast conversation, they discovered they each had an interest in self-serve yogurt.

“They're all over the place down south and out west,” Don said. “They've recently crept into the Midwest. There's over 10 in Grand Rapids and a couple in Holland.”

But the Knebls and Wadagas wanted to bring the trend to Grand Haven. And, in doing so, they've experienced an unexpected added bonus – together, they've lost more than 100 pounds eating frozen yogurt for lunch or dinner a few times a week.

Wild Blue Frozen Yogurt features 10 flavors of yogurt at any given time — including vanilla, chocolate, cake batter and black raspberry — with seasonal choices such as apple cider and pumpkin pie. The owners mix all the flavors on-site.

Customers can serve up as much as they would like, then embellish with more than 70 toppings — including fresh fruit, syrup, candy, cereal, nuts and other treats.

“You control what you get,” Don said. “You get exactly the amount you would like, with the toppings you would like on it, rather than have somebody make it for you. You can make it very healthy, or you can chocolate it up if you'd like.”

The frozen desserts are sold by the ounce.

The business was originally slated to open in August, but construction took longer than expected.

Don said opening a frozen treat business in late fall in Michigan isn't ideal, but business has been brisk so far.

“We've been very happy with the traffic and the reception has been very positive,” he said. “It's hard to stay in a bad mood when you're eating frozen yogurt.”

To read more of this story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.

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