local business of the month
- 8th street confectionery
Opened as a bar in 1947, 8th Street Confectionery has always been known as a Fairmont landmark, especially for the local crowd. In 1973, Johnny Riggi purchased the business and shifted the establishment’s focus to food. 8th Street quickly became a staple eatery known for it’s steak hoagies and home fries with onions and peppers. Johnny’s son, Mike, took over management of the restaurant in 1993. The Riggi family operated the business until its closure in 2019.
In early 2020, Rivesville natives Galen, Jeff, and Robert Tinnell made the leap to purchase the business and keep the tradition alive. The brothers were introduced to the Confectionery when they were children as their parents were friends with the previous owners. “We always came here as kids,” says Jeff. The brothers began visiting 8th Street Confectionery in 1989 and when they were presented with the opportunity to purchase the business, they couldn’t pass it up. “It was as turnkey as you could find. Nothing has changed,” exclaims Galen. “There is a special quality to it and places like this really capture what Fairmont is all about.” Jeff and Galen stated that the Riggi family was exceptional in all ways when it came to transition of ownership and that they have continued to stay involved since the Tinnells have taken over.
Working off of the original menu and popular daily specials, the new owners have continued to maintain the loyal and consistent relationship with the business’s customers. “It’s really such a Fairmont thing here. It’s a destination here,” says Galen. “There is a customer who shows up every Friday at 10:40 am, and it’s people like him who keep us going.”
The successful business model that made 8th Street Confectionery such a hit within the community was still in place once the Tinnells took over. Although, they faced the unique challenge of not only operating but opening a business during the COVID-19 pandemic. Under new ownership, the doors opened on April 17th. To combat this, the owners and staff have adjusted to specialize in primarily take-out orders as well as progressing towards a mobile ordering system. In regards to adjusting to take-out orders, “The response has been great,” says Jeff. “The choice to remain take-out only has been a precaution to minimize risk for both our customers and employees,” exclaims Galen.
When asked what they would want people to know about the new 8th Street Confectionary, Galen and Jeff emphasized that the core business is staying the same. There will be the same quality of food and consistency that has always been known of 8th Street. “It’s comfort food with a home environment,” says Jeff. “We just want to continue to expand and see positive growth within Fairmont.”
8th Street Confectionery is the City of Fairmont’s Local Business of the Month for the month of November and will be highlighted throughout. We encourage all citizens to check out 8th Street Confectionery and everything that they have to offer throughout the year. They are located at 301 8th St and you can learn more about them by checking out their Facebook page, or giving them a call at (304) 363-9503. The current takeout hours are Monday through Friday 11 AM to 6 PM.