If the town grants the Tonto Apache Tribe a business license by 11 a.m. today (Friday), it will celebrate by immediately opening the doors of its latest enterprise: a Marble Slab Creamery ice cream franchise in the Sawmill Crossing shopping center.
"We're waiting for a callback right now to see what the status is" on the business license, said Jerry Holland, controller for the tribe. "We can't open lawfully until we have that license in hand. But we're ready to go."
Marble Slab which became a popular national franchise chain by blending premium-quality ice cream, yogurt or Italian sorbet with a variety of mix-ins has 113 stores in the U.S., with 50 in various stages of development across 25 states. The company was founded in Houston, Texas, in 1983.
The opening of the Marble Slab Creamery directly follows that of its Sawmill Crossing neighbor: Quizno's, a quick-service, Italian-style sub sandwich shop that's part of a 20-year-old Denver-born franchise.
Since 1981, Quizno's has followed an aggressive national and international growth agenda, launching stores in 40 states, Puerto Rico, Canada, Japan, the United Kingdom, Australia and Central America.
Another Sawmill Crossing eatery set to open for business in the near future is The Cookie Cafe. Information on this establishment, however, could not be obtained by press time.