MAMARONECK, N.Y. –Slap-Shop Café owner Gus Lucas is looking forward to another five years of service to the Town of Mamaroneck.
Lucas, who has been running the concession stand at Hommocks Ice Rink for the last 20 years and has just been awarded a new five-year lease, couldn’t imagine being anywhere else.
“It’s a part of me. I’ve seen kids go from lessons to varsity hockey,” he said.
The café serves fresh food daily. Unlike an average concession stand, Lucas cooks all of his food to order. Customers come to Hommocks just to grab a bite to eat for dinner. One couple, he said, meets at the Slap-Shot Cafe once a week after their work commute.
“I don’t treat this like a normal concession stand,” he said. “And I think people enjoy that.”
Lucas employs a full-time cook, who has been working for him for 13 years. He has two other part-time helpers, both of whom have been his employees for more than 10 years. He also has a college student working part-time, who has been working at the café for four years.
“In all these years, I’ve barely changed help,” he said. “As long as everything is done and the place is clean, I let them take a seat and read a book, I don’t mind.”
The town awarded the five-year lease to Lucas after he matched a competitive bid placed by Costa Foods of Rye Brook. The lease will start out at $26,000 for the space in 2013 and end at $30,000 a year by 2017. He will be paying a 47 percent increase in 2013 from his rent ending this year of $17,640. Utilities are an additional expense.
According to town records, Lucas first offered a lower bid with the incentive of expanding the stand following the bid from Costa Foods. The town decided that the expansion didn’t coincide with the rink’s capital improvement plans happening over the next three years and decided to turn the offer down, forcing Lucas to come up in his bid price.
Lucas did not want to comment on the bidding or his rent increase, but said he was going to do his best to keep prices down and his customers happy.
“The people here are great, we have a wonderful working relationship with the rink staff, and customers know us from when their kids were little,” Lucas said. “This is great news.”
A menu and hours for the rink can be found on the Town of Mamaroneck's website.