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July 27th, 2011Counting her beans in Stroud Mall

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by Wayne Witkowski

A half hour before Stroud Mall was opening, Dawn Vititoe at Got Beans, a kiosk coffee shop, was serving breakfast wraps cooked by Alex Piscitelli and coffees to senior citizens who are part of a social group that walks the corridors for exercise in the mornings.

Vititoe regards the seniors as the “golden group,” who are part of the reliable repeat business that she gets while waiting for the re-opening of the movie theater in the mall.

Store owners have said the walled in construction area has discouraged customers from coming to the mall.

“I can’t wait for the new theater,” said Vititoe of the CineMark 12-screen theater that will include IMAX and 3-D. Supplanting the previous owner AMC Lowe’s, which had seven screens, it will be the second Monroe County theater with 3-D screens, along with the Poconos Movieplex on Route 209 in Marshalls Creek.

The new CineMark theater is a 34,866 square-foot multiplex but, despite the added screens, it will have 131 fewer seats. Seating will drop from 1,699 to 1,568 because stadium seating takes more space than traditional ramp seating. The main viewing auditorium will seat 300. The other 11 theaters range between 91 and 150 seats.

Vititoe said the foot traffic of people not only coming to the mall to shop but to see a movie would enhance the idea of her business of providing refreshments. The speciality is coffee from Barrie’s Coffee and Tea Co. in Yonkers, N.Y., as well as the bubble tea she introduced recently that she said is selling even more briskly than her many popular coffees. The tea is a smoothie with tapioca pearls, a beverage popular with children in the Far East going back to the early 1900s.

“This is a more interactive coffee shop where people meet people,” said Piscitelli. “When you’re here, it’s like you’re in the middle of a stage.”

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