May 12, 2021

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We know our pets

‘Fat Cat’ seems to be to assist groups make scratch with fundraising hoagies in New Kensington

Just after 30 yrs of slinging subs in Harmar, the Excess fat Cat has arrive house to New Kensington.

Jon “Fat Cat” Wildi purchased a building at 832 Fifth Ave., not considerably from in which, as a teen, the lifelong New Ken resident experienced his to start with occupation as a parking great deal attendant.

There, he options to home and improve his concession and fundraising enterprise, which for him might exchange the retail shop fully if he can locate a buyer.

“I’d like to give another person the option I was supplied,” stated Wildi, 57. “Hopefully they’ll have a 30-yr operate as very well.”

But first, Wildi will rejoice his 30th anniversary with festivities from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday at Unwanted fat Cat’s Subs, at 1401 Freeport Highway. It will include an appearance by Popcorn the Clown, an airbrush artist, new music and cost-free sizzling pet dogs, cotton candy, popcorn and snow cones.

The rain day is Saturday, May perhaps 29.

A 1981 Valley Substantial School graduate, Wildi stated he obtained the nickname “Fat Cat” from a niece, who when she initial started out conversing identified as him that due to the fact he had numerous cats, “and I’m fat.”

Wildi acquired his business in 1991, when it was named Rudy’s Subs. He held that identify until 2010, when he adjusted it to Excess fat Cat’s to develop his possess identity, and begun his fundraising procedure.

Wildi experienced labored at the shop, which he explained prior to him experienced 5 entrepreneurs about 20 many years. He arrived to obtain it right after stopping in for a sandwich and the then-owner, whose wife was sick, asked if he realized anyone who would want to invest in the small business so he could remain home and choose treatment of her.

He kept the original menu, and extra to it. Among the the specialty subs is the namesake “Fat Cat,” a cheeseburger sub with capicola, egg, bacon, American and provolone cheese, fried onions, roasted red peppers, lettuce, tomato, pickles, ketchup, mustard and mayo. Banana and jalapeno peppers are optional but, sorry, no coupons.

Wildi started out the fundraising small business out of the Harmar shop, but needs to make it a total-time enterprise and broaden the merchandise line from hoagies to include gourmet popcorn, home made soups and pizza.

In New Kensington, Wildi plans to establish his kitchen area on the lessen stage and have production on the first flooring. He expects to lease space on the higher ground for workplaces.

Teams and businesses get the exact same subs Wildi sells in his keep. At a prompt marketing rate of $9 each individual, a group will make amongst $2.50 and $3.50, based on the number marketed.

“People wanted us to do it,” he reported. “They were not joyful with the high-quality of the other areas they were finding their fundraiser sandwiches from.”

In addition to fundraising, Wildi reported his concession company usually takes him to fairs and festivals, which he misplaced all but 1 of in 2020 because of the covid-19 pandemic. The pandemic also delayed the strategies he’s now going forward with in New Kensington.

As component of the operation, Wildi mentioned he plans to build a vocational plan and employ young adults on the autism spectrum.

“I believe they are neglected,” he stated. “We will have jobs for them.”

Brian C. Rittmeyer is a Tribune-Review staff author. You can contact Brian at 724-226-4701, [email protected] or by using Twitter .