Jersey Mike’s Subs coming to city

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This rendering shows what the Jersey Mike’s Subs sign will look like on the property the restaurant is coming to at 1785 Melody Lane, Greenfield.

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GREENFIELD — Jason Horning, deputy chief of the Greenfield Fire Territory, was in Indianapolis a few years ago for a week-long firefighting class and was looking for a place to grab lunch.

He saw a sign for Jersey Mike’s Subs, and, noticing it was a restaurant Greenfield didn’t have, decided to give it a try.

“I ended up eating lunch there the rest of the week because I liked it so well,” he said.

Now, he and several members of his family are bringing their own Jersey Mike’s Subs to Greenfield.

Horning, his wife, Jama Horning; his brother, Eric Horning; and Eric’s wife, Heather Horning are behind the venture. The restaurant is going into about 1,600 square feet at 1785 Melody Lane in Melody Plaza next to Buffalo Wild Wings.

Horning anticipates construction starting in early August and hopes to open in mid-October.

“I think the biggest thing is that everything is so fresh when you order a sandwich,” he said of the offerings at Jersey Mike’s Subs, adding the meats and cheeses are sliced upon ordering and vegetables are sliced periodically throughout the day. He finds the bread, the dough from which is made in New Jersey, to also be of a higher quality.

Horning admires the business’ approach to customer service as well.

“Everybody likes to be greeted when they walk into a place and like to feel their business is appreciated, and that’s a big deal with that franchise and will be a big deal with our store,” he said.

After those first meals at Jersey Mike’s Subs, Horning and his family members kicked the idea around of having one of their own for a few years before deciding to pursue it. The company approved them last November.

“As you’re going through the process to be franchisees, you learn a lot about the company,” Horning said, including how founder Peter Cancro remains heavily involved in running the organization. “And they have a lot of good founding principles, and it’s something that we felt like we could align ourselves with.”

Those principles include giving and being involved in the community, Horning continued. He recalled his late father, Ron Horning, and the decades he served leading the Boys & Girls Clubs of Hancock County.

“I think that gave our family a good understanding of how important philanthropy is and supporting service organizations in the community, so I think it’s going to be a good fit for our family and for the community,” Horning said.

Horning has spent his career as a firefighter and served on Greenfield City Council for 12 years. His wife is a retired paramedic. His brother and sister-in-law are retired from the U.S. Army.

“Service to the community resonates with us pretty well,” he said.

He looks forward to participating in the Jersey Mike’s Subs tradition of donating to charity every March, and plans to get a head start on that custom by donating to a local charity when his family’s restaurant opens later this fall.

Horning enjoyed the process of working with the company to get the franchise started.

“They understand this is a new venture for our family, something we haven’t done before, so they have been extremely helpful,” he said.

Preparations involved talking to current and former Jersey Mike’s Subs franchisees, Horning continued. He also recalled a video-conference with the company’s CEO, CFO and other executives.

“I’m a small fish in a big pond, but that made me feel really good that they were taking time out of their evening at home to be on a Zoom call with us from Greenfield, Indiana,” he said. “They really care about your success.”

Entrepreneurship may be new for Horning, but not his brother, who owns his own home inspection business.

“The restaurant field is new for us, but there is one thing I do know about and that’s providing good customer service,” Horning said, adding it’s one of his priorities as a fire department official.

The Hornings hope to have between 15 and 20 employees and are currently looking for managers. Those interested can send resumes to [email protected]

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