CAPE ELIZABETH — Great Falls Construction is not only rebuilding the the Cookie Jar bakery, it is also financing the rebirth of the Shore Road business.
Todd Rothstein, project manager for Gorham-based Great Falls, said former Cookie Jar owners Donna and Tom Piscapo will still run the business.
“Everything will be the same,” Rothstein said. “The difference is the financing. The difference is, we are supplying the finances to get them get back on their feet and get the business rebuilt.”
The business has been closed since October 2006, when a storm tore the roof off the building. Attempts to reopen the business were stalled until March, when Great Falls Construction of Gorham began renovations.
The Piscopos have owned the business since 1981, when Tom bought it from his parents Grace and Frank, who owned the business since the late 1960s.
Rothstein said Great Falls Construction’s owner, Jon Smith, wanted to work with the couple, who had deep roots in the community. He said the Piscopos had been looking for funding to help them reopen and rebuild their business when Smith came forward to help preserve the local landmark.
The construction company will provide the financial means for the restoration and reopening, and Rothstein said the walls, floors and ceiling are nearly complete. Equipment continues to trickle in, and by the end of this week the windows, the exhaust hood, front counter and display cases were expected to be installed.
“Everything is coming together,” he said. “We are shooting for a soft opening Memorial Day weekend. If all goes well, we will be back in business by June.”
Joy Piscopo, in an April 23 press release, said the financing arrangement shows how small business owners can help each other.
“Not only is Great Falls helping our family recover from the devastation of being out of business for so long, but they are helping the community around the bakery and the people that we will employ, which is at least 15 to begin with,” Piscopo said. “They are truly making a difference in a lot of people’s lives.”
Amy Anderson can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 110 or firstname.lastname@example.org