Ice cream shop preps to reopen in downtown Amherst

  • Katelin Garland, 19, of Concord adds mini M&Ms to a dish of ice cream at Ballard's Ice Cream in Concord on Wednesday, May 25, 2016. Garland has started her third summer as a Ballard?s employee. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff) ELIZABETH FRANTZ

Staff Writer
Sunday, May 14, 2017

AMHERST — Residents and visitors craving locally made ice cream as warm weather arrives will still have a place to get the summertime treat in downtown Amherst.

Though Amherst Homemade Ice Cream and Cookies at 103 North Pleasant St. hasn’t yet reopened after its usual winter break, landlord Barry Roberts said the operators of the restaurant will be ready to return to business in the coming weeks.

“They’re in transition and working with a new manager who will take over,” Roberts said.

Roberts explained that Amherst Homemade, which had been known as Bart’s Homemade since the early 1980s, is run by George Ejja, who founded the Pita Pockets in neighboring space in 2014 and whose family oversees a second Pita Pockets location in Northampton.

Family health issues and changes in management at the three restaurants, Roberts said, are to blame for the delayed reopening of the ice cream shop, which usually happens in March.

Scott Merzbach can be reached at smerzbach@gazettenet.com.