Originally Published at O’Fallon Progress by Jamie Forsythe
Greg and Lori Potter of O’Fallon have opened the first Jersey Mike’s Subs franchise in the metro-east. Both Greg and Lori are giving up their current jobs and surfing into franchise ownership. The sub shop is located in the Green Mount Crossing shopping complex in Shiloh.
Greg’s previous job was repairing surgical instruments, and Lori was a school nurse at Carriel Junior High School in O’Fallon. Neither have experience owning a franchise, but they are optimistic about their new business endeavor.
We recently sat down with Greg Potter. Here’s what he had to say:
Why did you and your wife decide to open a Jersey Mike’s Subs shop?
“I used to repair surgical instruments, and I traveled extensively for that job. For a year, I had a job down at Vanderbilt (University) in Nashville, Tenn. I kept driving by this Jersey Mike’s Subs, and I was like what is a Jersey Mike’s Sub? I came in and had one. I just said, ‘this is a really great product. Wow.’ Once you have one, you really see the standard as far as subs are concerned. It’s really something you just have to try for yourself. I fell in love with it.”
Do you have any experience running a franchise business?
“No, this is our first one, and we plan on putting a couple more in, in the area. We’ll see how this goes first. I’ve been a cook all my life. I love food. I love to cook, and that’s what I was looking for. I really wanted to be in a restaurant, but I didn’t want the restaurant-type menu and constant change. This fit my personality, and it fit my skill level.”
Why type of training did you receive?
“I trained up in Chicago for three months, and it was everything I thought it would be. They are just a really genuine franchise. I wouldn’t even call it a franchise. It’s more of a culture.”
What makes Jersey Mike’s Subs superior to other subs?
“Freshness. We bake our bread fresh daily. We shred our lettuce and cut our onions and tomatoes daily. There’s nothing leftover that you will have the next day on your sub. It’s all fresh that morning. The quality of the meat is USDA grade A. We do our own in-house roast beef. It’s kind of a restaurant-type sub shop.”
What promotion are you doing for your grand opening celebration?
“The promotion is $1 donation will get a you a free regular 6-inch sub, and the dollar goes to O’Fallon Township High School. You must have a fundraising coupon for the promotion, and the coupon must be used from Nov. 2 to Nov. 6.” (Note: Coupons are being circulated throughout the community.)
Why did you decide to raise money for OTHS?
“I feel our children are our future. I know it sounds cliché, but it’s true.”
What’s your favorite sandwich at Jersey Mike’s and why?
“The Philly cheese steak got me hooked. To find a good Philly cheese steak in St. Louis is hard to do.”
How many different kinds of subs do you have?
“We have roughly 17.”
Do you have any other food besides subs?
“You can make any sub you want into a salad — a sub in a tub. We throw lettuce in there and throw all the meats on top. You can have wraps. We have a really good Caesar chicken wrap.”
How many employees do you have?
“I typically have anywhere from 10 to 15. All are welcome to apply. I will do my best to do what I can as far as employment.”
Do you deliver?
“No delivery, but we do catering.”
Greg, 42, and Lori Potter, 38, have been married 13 years. The couple has two children: Evan, 9, and Josie, 5.
Jersey Mike’s Subs in Shiloh, located at 3284 Green Mount Crossing Dr., is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. everyday. For more information, call the shop at 622-8934 or visit www.jerseymikes.com.