Marlborough, Connecticut 06447


August 12, 2005    

Pine Needlesí Final Days
Interview with Owner Patty Kasik
By Shari L. Covino

Recently I sat down with Patty Kasik of Pine Needles Emporium and Bagelry to talk about her leaving the business in town and how she viewed the success and transformation of her business, along with the transition from Pine Needles to Dunkin' Donuts. Patty had this to say:

Q: Iím sure most everyone who stops at Pine Needles wants to know specifically what led to the Bagelry closing?

PK: Personal health issues and an incredible amount of work. Twenty people work here and keeping everything going is a struggle. Itís a lot of work.

Q: How has the business been since residents have learned about the Pine Needles closing?

PK: People have been upset. They are asking every day - when are you closing? Business has stayed about the same but we are closing earlier. We stopped having any bands coming in.

Q: You know, Patty, Pine Needles customers and residents alike, including myself, are very sorry to see you close PN. They just arenít ready to accept that Dunkin' Donuts is replacing Pine Needles.

PK: I feel badly about that. Iíve thought long and hard about it. They will try to make Dunkin' Donuts like this Ė a first of its kind Ė with cherry wood, keeping the fireplace and couches and patio. Iíve been feeling burned out lately. Dunkin' Donuts approached me just at the right time. They were looking for a spot in Town.

Q: How do you think Dunkin' Donuts will affect the Town in general and the overall Townís character?

PK: I think the way the will do it will be nice and tasteful. They may even keep some of the acoustical music. We met a lot of nice people here and thoroughly enjoyed the musicians who played here.

Q: The atmosphere at Pine Needles is unique. What inspired you and how did you arrive at the rustic theme at Pine Needles?

PK: Just from a love of being in the mountains in Vermont and Yellowstone. We will be going [back] there when we close on this transaction.

Q: There is talk that Dunkin' Donuts will maintain some of Pine Needlesí unique interior charm? Do you believe that will happen?

PK: Yes, they showed me pictures. They have one in Boston, with a traditional comfortable setting. Theyíre making it for people who can gather and stay for their coffee and doughnuts. My husband worked really hard in creating a menu and other beer garden and he had a lot to do with growing the business and was actively involved. People say it wonít be the same but it is the people who worked here that made it a pleasant place to come to.

Q: What other special qualities of Pine Needles do you believe have made it unique?

PK: People say they really like our food. We now have breakfast, lunch, and dinner Ė we have evolved over time, into a full service restaurant. The musicians that we had play were all great Ė it was a lot of fun.

Q: How do you think Dunkin' Donuts will affect surrounding area businesses?

PK: I donít think it will affect businesses much. Maybe it will draw other new businesses into town.

Q: Will you open up another bagelry here or in another town?

PK: No. My husband is a builder and I will help him with his books and other aspects of the business.

Q: Are you satisfied with the settlement you have been given to turn over to Dunkin' Donuts? Do you think it was a fair and equitable settlement?

PK: Yes.

Q: How will this affect your membership at MBA?

PK: I wonít be around here. I donít live in Marlborough anymore Ė I live in Middletown. But, I will stop up to visit friends from time to time.

Q: What is the scheduled date of closing?

PK: I still donít know yet. It could be any day.

Q: Again, Patty, Pine Needlesí customers are sorry to see you go. Do you have any passing thoughts or final comments for the MBA community?

PK: Iíve had a really nice experience with most of the people in Town. My husband and I would like to thank everybody for their support and the MBA for supporting the horse and buggy ride at Christmas time. Iíd like to thank all of the employees we have had over the last five years. Iíd also like to thank all of our friends and customers over the years that helped make us successful Ė we thank you and wish all of you the best!


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