Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Kohut Creamery

Today the intersection at 45th and Washington Street is a an exit from I-70, but the area was a busy commercial hub in Globeville before the highway was built. Jim Kohut remembers his family's business. "My mother and dad owned the Creamery. For many years, my dad had bought pieces of display counters here, there and stored them in the garage until the dirt was an inch thick on them. He always said, “One day, I’m going to open a business.” Eventually he went over to the old bar and restaurant on 45th and Washington there, run by Koprivics and rented an empty building adjoining their bar from them for $35 a month. Then he talked to Meadow Gold and they supplied our milk, eggs and ice cream. And Rainbow took take care of us on the breads. He put that all together and rented the building. My mother was scared to death. She got some material and made some outfits and hired Frances Popish, who was going to work for us. She was probably 18 at the time, her first job ever. She came in from 58th and Franklin in her little car to work for us. Our good friend Johnny Tanko helped dad make the sign for us that said Washington Creamery, and about killed himself putting it up. We got in there and everything was laid out, the ice cream, the bread, the milk, potato chips, can goods,you know, the basics. Johnny Tanko told my mother she had to take in 35 bucks that first day or go broke. And she took in $46. She was tickled to death.
“Later, we built a building at 4565 Washington on the west side of the street. The front part was all Creamery and we lived in the back. We had the business for four or five years, from 1942, and when I got out of high school, my folks sold it.”

Mary and Mike Kohut outside the Creamery
photo used with written permission from the Kohut family

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