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New frozen yogurt shop for Main Street River Falls

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Yo-Joe's Frozen Yogurt & Coffee Shoppe, a self-serve sold-by-the-ounce frozen yogurt shop, is set to open Aug. 1 at 123 South Main Street, according to co-founder Laurie Levine.

With eight different flavors of high-grade YoCream frozen yogurt and 50-plus toppings, everyone should be able to find something to indulge in - and when it's cool outside, Yo-Joe's full-bar of coffee will warm one up.

Besides selling frozen yogurt and coffee, Levine hopes Yo-Joe's will be family friendly place that becomes a meeting place for those in the community.

With the success of her first Yo-Joe's venture in Cottage Grove, Minn., Levine started looking for the next place to open her business. River Falls appealed to her because it's not only a college town, but also a very homey town.

"It reminds me of home, of Stillwater - it's homegrown," said Levine, who grew up in the Bayport, Stillwater area.

To get ready for their grand opening in August, Yo-Joe's has been undergoing a remodel by local contractor, Craftsman Renovations, LLC.

"In addition to the storefront facelift and customizing the space to suit their store design and layout," said Craftsman Renovations co-owner, Mike Faletti, "we have upgraded their plumbing and electrical capabilities to meet the needs of the specialty yogurt and coffee equipment."

With an eye toward history - it initially housed the Gladstone Hotel - the façade of the 1886 building that will house Yo-Joe's is being restored to its original splendor, and full glass windows are being added so those on the street will be able to see into the store.

"Inside, original brick and stone walls will be left exposed to tie the new space to its past," said Faletti.

One staple that will be carried over from the first store are the custom-made white-board tables, where Yo-Joe's customers can let their inner artist out.

Yo-Joe's will feature eight different flavors in four self-serve machines. Each machine will feature two individual flavors, along with a swirl flavor.

According to Levine, Yo-Joe's typically has chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, N.Y. cheesecake, cookies 'n' cream, and cake batter. As the season changes other flavors such as peanut butter and red velvet are added.

To top off the frozen yogurt, Yo-Joe's features over 50 different toppings including fruits - strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, etc.; kids' favorites - gummy worms, gummy bears, sour patch kids, etc.; candies - multiple types of M&Ms, sprinkles, etc. Yo-Joe's also features Ghirardelli chocolate sauce and caramel - and what treat is complete without a dollop of cool whip on top.

Healthy options such as granola are also offered as well as a full-bar of "'green' fair trade organic arabica bean" coffee.

Levine hopes to be open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Sunday, though those times may be tweaked as needed. "We tend to stay open later if we have people coming in," she said.

With the August opening date on the horizon and a Thursday, Aug. 9, ribbon cutting planned, Levine is looking to hire workers for the new location sometime in July.

Training for the River Falls employees will happen at the Cottage Grove location later in July.

Applications can be found at , under the "work here" tab. For more information about the sold-by-the-ounce frozen yogurt shop, visit their website at or their Facebook page "Yo-Joe's Frozen Yogurt & Coffee Shoppe."

Read more about Yo-Joe's Frozen Yogurt & Coffee Shoppe in the June, 28 edition of the Journal.

Jillian Dexheimer
Jillian Dexheimer has been a copy editor and reporter for the River Falls Journal since 2011. She previously worked for the River Falls Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Bureau. Dexheimer holds a sociology degree from UW-River Falls.
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