A Committed Community Partners
Franco’s Pizza celebrates 3 years
By Beth Volpert
Franco’s has given away more than 120,000 gift certificates as reward incentives to local schools!
Flying dough, warm, gooey cheese and homemade ingredients set Franco’s pizza apart from most pizzerias. What makes them rise to the top isn’t found just in the superior toppings, but in the constant commitment to their community.
Franco’s has given away more than 120,000 gift certificates as reward incentives to local schools since they opened their doors three years ago. “We make every effort to provide encouragement for all students” says Deb Petersen, co-owner with her husband, Mark. “Kids struggle with lots of different things in school, we want to help in any way we can to reward their hard work.”
When Deb and Mark decided to open Franco’s, they set out to create a delicious New York Style Pizza with fresh, homemade dough, superior ingredients and a variety of toppings. Deb says she is happy to let Mark keep his kitchen in good and spotless order so that he can create delicious new items for their extensive menu.
“I prefer to interact with our customers in the community,” says Deb. “It is a privilege to be involved in so many events and have an impact on the lives of the students in our area.”
Franco’s is one of the biggest sponsors for the PBIS program at Archer High School. “When students are Responsible, Respectful, Role-Models, we reward them with tiger tickets,” explains Archer’s Tamarra Soto. “These tickets are turned in for weekly drawings.” For the past three years, Franco’s Pizza has provided coupons for free food for the winners. Deb creates the coupons just for Archer complete with school logo, mascot, and PBIS expectations- Responsible, Respectful, Role-Model. “We are so thankful for all their support and could not ask for a better business partner,” says Tamarra.
Another of Franco’s education partners is Simonton Elementary in Lawrenceville. “All of the success we have gleaned at Simonton could not have been possible without the cooperation and support of valued partners like Franco’s Pizza,” says Dena Dryden. “Throughout the year, Franco’s Pizza has provided free pizza gift certificates as incentives to students who go above and beyond in striving for academic and behavioral success.” Dena also wanted to thank Franco’s and let them know that they look forward to a continued relationship in the great endeavor of promoting student excellence.
With Deb working on the marketing aspects of their business, Mark spends his time in a spotless kitchen dreaming up new menu possibilities.
The three giant ovens are calibrated to his specifications and the ingredients are carefully selected, stored and ready for the creativity that sets Franco’s apart. Specialties of the kitchen include Mark’s oven roasted chicken which he cooks himself from fresh product. He has several recipes that include his specialty chicken which he has perfected over the past three years. “I have an alfredo sauce that we make into a pizza or pasta dish that is our number one requested item when catering,” says Mark. “It is made from scratch, just like everything in our kitchen.”
Aside from the fabulous alfredo and NY Style Pizza, Franco’s offers a calzone stuffed with a mixture of ricotta, provolone, parmesan, mozzarella, and Romano cheeses plus garlic and herbs. They spread the mix to the ends and bake the calzone to a crispy and even golden-brown. “We take the extra steps to make sure that there is stuffing in every bite instead of having doughy ends,” says Mark. “It makes each bite perfect.” They even offer a homemade cannoli stuffing sampler for dessert which is creamy and delicious. Getting to taste the offerings from Mark’s kitchen is just one of the perks of a writer’s job, but dinner and a “show” made the interview complete. Watching Mark “toss” the dough for an extra-large New Yorker is like watching an artist at work. It isn’t easy to get the right spin going and takes practice to get an even crust for a perfect pie.
The staff at Franco’s has plenty of fun and loves working there. “We have close to half of our original staff still with us,” says Deb. “Most of those who have left went on to college and still come by to visit us.”
Whether you choose takeout, pickup, or catering from Franco’s, you are guaranteed a fresh, delicious and homemade experience. Three years building a business in a rough economy has proved that if you stick to your commitments, give to your community and provide a superior product, then your community will give back to you.
During the month of September, Franco’s will be celebrating their anniversary with a gift for the community. Check out their Buy One Pizza, Get A Second Half-Price Deal. You can find them on Facebook at Franco’s Best Pizza or on the web at http://www.FrancosBestPizza.com.
1365 Grayson Hwy
Lawrenceville Ga 30045