Bellefonte

Business won’t rest on ‘First Sunday’ in Bellefonte

State Burger Co. waitress Amanda Barnhart hands Ellen Noll her burger Friday, Jan. 5, 2018 at State Burger Co. in Bellefonte.
State Burger Co. waitress Amanda Barnhart hands Ellen Noll her burger Friday, Jan. 5, 2018 at State Burger Co. in Bellefonte. psheehan@centredaily.com

Apparently, even the family dog likes to catch a few extra hours of shut-eye over the weekend.

Carly Andriaccio owns Bone Bar and Boutique, a small shop located on West High Street in Bellefonte that caters to canines that enjoy the finer things in life: a hand-knit sweater, gourmet treats, maybe a new toy or two.

Sundays are usually quiet. So quiet, in fact, that the people who come through the door are occasionally surprised it’s not locked.

“They’re like, ‘Wow, you’re the only place in Bellefonte that’s open,’ ” Andriaccio said.

Luckily for people who want to shop for their pets and get a cheeseburger for lunch, that shouldn’t hold true for the prime Sunday in January — or any of the months to follow.

Bellefonte’s First Sunday initiative harnesses the combined efforts of almost 30 local businesses, many of which have agreed to keep their signs facing firmly in the “open” direction from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

A test run held in December was warmly received.

“Everybody seemed to love it. The town was really busy. I had a lot of business,” Andriaccio said.

The concept of First Sunday actually arrived fresh off of a seven-year incubation period inside the walls of the Bellefonte Art Museum.

An otherwise mundane flip of the calendar became an excuse to display new collections or host talks with visiting artists.

Whatever the focus, gallery manager Lori Fisher thinks that variety is the key to attracting wayward weekenders downtown.

“People want to see something different each month,” Fisher said.

This weekend the spotlight falls on State Burger Co., a restaurant that opened at 101 S. Allegheny St. just before the holidays.

Patrons custom build their meals using a checklist of ingredients and because ordering lunch didn’t have high enough stakes already, a First Sunday selfie contest is dangling a (temporary) place on the menu in front of the burger that can rack up the most votes on Bellefonte.com.

“I can’t wait for Sunday to get here so we can see what people come up with,” manager Sandy Bainey said.

Frank Ready: 814-231-4620, @fjready

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