Reader Mail: Wassup with Ice Hut?
Received this email from Hoboken411 reader Carli during our recent heat wave – about how not to run a seasonal business!
“With the temperature reaching 90, I headed over to Ice Hut on Washington Street. I like this place; it’s a Hoboken tradition yet to be quashed by big-name chains such as Rita’s and Cold Stone.
When I got there, a sign was in the window that said “back in 10 minutes.” This is nothing new, and as a small business in a struggling economy, I can understand that they’re scaling back on employees and that said employees need an occasional break away from the small store space. I waited 10 minutes, not knowing when the sign had gone up. After 15 minutes, it became more of a curiosity than an actual desire to purchase ices—when would they come back? Were they really open? After 20 minutes, I walked half a block to Rita’s. When I passed by Ice Hut on the way home, it was still empty.
I originally arrived at Ice Hut at 5:30. The streets were full of rush hour commuters and young families. I saw many people gaze at Ice Hut to see if it was open and a handful wait for a few minutes looking puzzled. Later, a friend told me she’s experienced the very same thing.
I called later on to see why no one was there for so long, and was told that the evening cashier had decided not to come in and the daytime cashier went home to change. OK. That’s not the owner’s fault, but would it have killed the girl to write a sign that said, “Went home at 5:20; be back around 6” so people can choose whether to wait around or not? I wonder just how much business these “10 minute breaks” is costing Ice Hut!”