Manco & Manco to close midweek

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Manco and Manco - 9th Street Manco and Manco - 9th Street

Slowdown in winter business prompts owners to shutter OC’s Ninth Street store on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays  Jan. 17-April 5.

 

 

Wednesday was a typical midweek winter day for the Manco & Manco store at 920 Boardwalk. Pizza dough was stretched, topped with cheese and finished with a swirl of sauce before being baked and served to the faithful who stopped in for a slice.

But starting Jan. 17 next week, the landmark pizzeria will be closed on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, a situation prompted by a slowdown in winter business, said co-owner Chuck Bangle. It is the first time in more than 20 years, dating to the 1980s, that Manco & Manco will not maintain a daily presence on the Boardwalk.

Thursday, Jan. 12, will be the last midweek day Manco & Manco will be open for business until daily hours resume on Tuesday, April 10. Exceptions will be made for holidays and unseasonably warm days, Bangle said, adding that arrangements will be made for the store to open when the forecast calls for balmy weather midweek.

Once Easter week arrives, Manco & Manco will return to daily hours of operation through New Year’s. “We will evaluate the situation after the first of every year,” Bangle said in regard to reduced hours of operation in January, February and March. He credited the shoulder season events sponsored by the city and various organizations with attracting traffic to the town, which helps Boardwalk businesses remain open through the holidays.

For now, the Ninth Street store will continue to be open from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and from 11:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sundays and Mondays. To meet Ocean City midweek demand, Manco & Manco Pizza Too in Somers Point will deliver on the island.

“We will not turn anybody down,” Bangle said. “In this economy, no one can afford to turn away any business.”

Citing the decline in the town’s year-round population, which fell by 25 percent between 2000 and 2010, and the increase in operating costs, which includes maintaining an inventory of perishables, Bangle said it was not economically prudent to keep Ocean City’s year-round Manco & Manco operating daily in the winter.

“There’s nothing on a cold day,” Bangle said, referring to business, which is always weather-dependent on the Boardwalk.

Ocean City’s population, which falls even further in the winter when a significant number of year-round residents move to Florida or other warm-weather locales, has challenged all local businesses.

“More and more people are cashing out,” Bangle said. “And what happens is that house becomes either a rental or a second home, so there’s one less customer to come to the Boardwalk year-round.”

The midweek closing of the Ocean City store gives customers an opportunity to visit the mainland Manco & Manco, which offers an expanded menu. There are 15 specialty pies on the menu, including buffalo chicken and fresh ricotta, chicken wings and tenders, cheesy bread and bread sticks, and cheese fries.

Manco & Manco Too is open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday to Thursday and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

The announcement of the midweek closing is the second noteworthy change the 55-year-old pizzeria has recently experienced. As of Jan. 1, the three Ocean City locations and the one Somers Point location had a slight name change to Manco & Manco.

For more information, call Manco & Manco at 609-399-2548 or Manco & Manco Too at 609-927-9000. The new Web site, www.mancospizza.com, is almost complete, and Bangle encourages customers to visit frequently to check for updates.

 


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