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Panera Bread Opens in Bellmore

After months of waiting, residents of the Bellmore-Merrick community were able to dine in Long Island's first two-story Panera Bread.

Another new business has come to Merrick Road.  

After months of waiting, residents of the Bellmore-Merrick community were able to dine in Long Island's first two-story Panera Bread which opened on Monday. 

"We are really excited to finally see opening day," Ashley Cabarcas, marketing manger of Panera Bread said. 

The 25th bakery-cafe' on Long Island, located at 2375 Merrick Road, offers off-street parking, free WiFi, a fireplace, two dining areas and a community room. 

"Organizations can book the community room for meetings for free," Cabarcas said.

On Monday afternoon, the restaurant was filled with patrons enjoying their lunches and surfing the Internet on their laptops.

Doug Moore of Bellmore treated his family to lunch on Panera's opening day. 

"They really did a beautiful job with the place and I was really excited for it to open," he said. "It's another welcomed restaurant on Merrick Road."
 
The restaurant is one of many new businesses on the bustling street. 

Last week, For Goodness Steaks, a kosher butcher shop, opened to the community's delight and in late November, Chocolate Works, which is located across the street from Panera, opened its doors.

In the coming weeks, Vanilla SkyDanny's Chinese Kitchen and Dessert City Cafe will open along the busy road. 

Cabarcas said that she is pleased that Panera can give back to the Bellmore-Merrick community.

"We opened in a neighborhood that was deeply affected by Hurricane Sandy," she said. "We have already employed 50 people." 

Do you think that Panera Bread will be a positive addition to the Bellmore-Merrick community? Tell us in the comments below. 
mary o'brien January 14, 2014 at 07:29 AM
It is great! I had the tomato and melted cheese panini. Delicious! Can't wait to go back for the bakery.
Madona Cole-Lacy January 15, 2014 at 09:17 AM
I am happy to welcome Panera Bread to my neighborhood. The idea of a whole floor dedicated to community groups and organizations in need of meeting space is simply brilliant. This suggests that the parent company (Doherty Enterprises) is aware of, and supports activities and services which subscribe to the growth of communities. I thank Doherty Enterprises for their support of the organization I founded to help Long Island's youth and parents navigate 21st century life challenges and pitfalls. Panera Bread has provided scrumptious lunches for our Self-Empowering Workshops for College-Bound High School Students and accommodated us when we needed meeting space over the years. Thank you for showing us you really care about what happens to Long Island's youth. We will forever be grateful to Doherty Enterprises for working with us. Thanks to Tim and Ashley for keeping things going for us. We are totally impressed with not just their culinary delights, but also with the professionalism of their staff! Be on the look-out for Panera Bread's full page Ad in our commemorative journal of our first fundraising gala..Celebrating the Creativity of our Youth. To learn more on how we can be of service to members of the Bellmore-Merrick community and the youth of Long Island in general, please visit our website www.yourtimeforcreativeempowerment.org.
Karen Krassner January 15, 2014 at 11:17 PM
My family loved Panera Bread! We are thrilled they opened in our town. The food is scrumptious and very fresh, and there are lots of really delicious healthy choices to choose from, as well as to-die-for bakery items. There is plenty of seating and the place is so warm inviting and comfortable. I hope they do well and stay here for a long long time!!!!!!!
Linda Kaldor January 17, 2014 at 12:54 AM
Love it glad it's finally opened. Will be going very soon.

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