New grocery, restaurant open in downtown Crete

Tia Maria has made the transition from regularly participating in the European Market to operating a storefront north of the post office. Image provided.

Tia Maria has made the transition from regularly participating in the European Market to operating a storefront north of the post office. Photo credit: Dennis Sullivan.

by Dennis Sullivan
editor@ewcnews.com
Feb. 13, 2014

Mike Abu was so eager to get the word out that his new grocery had opened downtown that he installed the store’s new sign in what Mayor Mike Einhorn termed, “the blink of an eye.”

On Monday, Crete Fresh Market got around to getting the village’s okay.

Trustee Holly Milburn, who owns and operates The Finishing Touch Florist, clearly wasn’t pleased to be contacted after the fact by the store, which celebrates its one-month anniversary on the 1300 block of Main Street Saturday.

“You are correct,” responded Village Administrator Tom Durkin. “The sign was put up inadvertently before getting approval from the village.”

Durkin cited the entrepreneurial maxim that, “It’s better to act now and ask for forgiveness later.”

TiaMariaSign02-10-14

Mexican restaurant has obtained approval for its sign, which seems to have one too many digits in the phone number. Image provided.

Tia Maria Authentic Mexican
In addition to retroactively approving Abu’s request, trustees approved front and rear signs for the Tia Maria Authentic Mexican Restaurant, located directly north of the post office in a two-store house.

Tia Maria is open for business on the 1300 block of Benton Street but the owners couldn’t be reached about business hours.

Tia Maria has been a regular participant in the Crete Area Chamber of Commerce’s annual European Market.

Informing new businesses
Prior to the Crete Fresh Market vote, Trustee Dan Taylor asked Durkin, “Do we need to give them (new businesses) a letter: Here’s how you do things?”

Crete Fresh Market's sign was approved -- retroactively -- Monday. Photo credit: Dennis Sullivan.

Crete Fresh Market’s sign was approved — retroactively — Monday. Photo credit: Dennis Sullivan.

Durkin replied the village does “try very much to make them aware, while welcoming them to the community.”

“We were really at a disadvantage,” added Einhorn.

“These guys (Abu and a partner) showed up on a Friday and said, ‘By the way, we’re taking over the business tomorrow.’ This guy does it in the blink of an eye.”

Crete Fresh Market, open Monday through Sunday from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., is in the building that once housed Seehausen’s Food Center.

Abu told Eastern Will County News Wednesday he isn’t sure there’s a need to put a sign up behind the store on Wood Street.

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Original material copyright 2014 Eastern Will County News; all rights reserved.

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