The first of three new businesses coming to one block of Washington Street in downtown Naperville has opened and is inviting customers to eat frozen yogurt and "be happy."
B Happy Cafe, owned by Michael Prince of Aurora, is offering self-serve frozen yogurt and create-your-own smoothies from a pastel painted storefront at 206 S. Washington St.
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"The east side of Washington is really going to transform," said Katie Wood, executive director of Downtown Naperville Alliance.
The transformation began when B Happy Cafe opened July 13. The shop sells cupcakes and pies along with its frozen yogurt, which customers can personalize with chocolate, candy and fruit toppings -- without a scale for pricing the creations based on weight.
"We took the fun and took away the unknown, the surprise at the end, and people really like that," Prince said.
So far, new customers are enjoying the ability to be creative with a yogurt that Prince said is gluten free and safe for most diabetics and people who are lactose intolerant.
"People really seem to be happy about making their own smoothie," Prince said. "They love to make their own masterpiece creation."
Just north of B Happy Cafe, Naperville General Store aims to open in mid-September at the southeast corner of Washington and Jefferson, said Debra Anton of Naperville, who owns the shop with her husband, Glenn.
Candles, home scents, bath and body products, gourmet food mixes, toys and games and so-called penny candy will be among the nostalgic items the Antons will sell in a country-themed shop at 204 S. Washington.
"Since Naperville is an older town, a historical town, we thought that something with an old-time feeling would work as long as it sold current merchandise," Anton said.
The general store will open at Washington and Jefferson a few months after Roseland Draperies and Interiors moved to 222 S. Main St. Anton said she was excited when the space became available because "the building itself definitely looks like a general store."
Staff at Eggs, Inc. Cafe said they hope to open their breakfast and lunch restaurant a few doors south of B Happy Cafe within the next few weeks. Gus, Peter and Bill Vassos, who own the first Eggs, Inc. location at 278 S. Weber Road in Bolingbrook, will operate their Naperville location 24 hours on Fridays and Saturdays, Wood said. The cafe's website says it combines "old-school service and professionalism with newer trends in food, while providing a hip ambience."