50’s Style Restaurant Keeps Things Interesting

05/06/2016  |  Carly Chronister

In today's changing world, it oftentimes becomes a challenge for small companies to stay in business. Constant competition and changing technologies are often detrimental to these companies and most of the time there's nothing that business owners can do to save themselves. The key to any business owner's success with today's current environment is to be able to deal with the constant change. While some companies struggle to stay in-business, others have found a way around these changes and are rapidly becoming well-known. Harshbarger's Sub N' Malt restaurant, located in McVeytown and Mifflintown, is a perfect example of this.

Owned and operated by Rhonda Gibbons, Harshbarger's Sub N' Malt was once connected to a video store. However, with the changing market, Rhonda knew the video store would stay in business for no longer than 10 years. When the business went under, Rhonda got out of the industry and focused on expanding her business by opening her first sit-down restaurant.

The idea for this restaurant was to be something different than any other. Since it's located in a small town, it can be challenging to get a lot of business. To help this problem, Rhonda wanted to do something that would be versatile, so she thought up a 50's style restaurant. "The goal was to attract people from all over. We wanted to offer a variety of things. We wanted to attract people of all ages and make them feel comfortable," stated Rhonda. She believes that this theme has succeeded in bringing in more business and providing a great dining experience.

Today, the business has officially been up and running for 27 years. The 50's theme is very popular amongst people of all ages and the restaurant remains busy and vibrant. Their sales have been increasing by 20 percent each year and Rhonda only sees the restaurant expanding even more in the future. Each year Harshbarger's Sub N' Malt does something different to keep attracting customers. The restaurant keeps things interesting and exciting by paving their driveway, changing their menu, painting the walls and designing a new t-shirt for employees to wear.

Harshbarger's Sub N' Malt also has an app powered by Purple Deck Media in which they use to attract more customers. They will soon be placing NFC stickers in all of their menu inserts so that customers can tap their phones on the tag and be prompted to their website. Starting in the month of May, anyone who comes in to dine at Harshbarger's Sub N' Malt and downloads their app using the NFC sticker will be entered to win a 25 dollar gift card. Rhonda is confident that this incentive will bring in even more people to the restaurant. They will also be launching a new menu on the first of May.

Small businesses like Harshbarger's Sub N' Malt prove that it is possible to overcome the always changing business climate. They are always striving to think of new and creative ways to make sure that their customers have a good experience dining at their restaurant, and they hope to create a fun and enjoyable environment for many years to come.