LIMA — Blueberries. Strawberries. A handful of granola, protein, peanut butter and spinach. Greek Yogurt and milk. Put it all together, mix it up, and that’s 610 calories of a thick fruit smoothie.
At Dash & Joey’s, Chad Endsley serves them up daily, and he’s looking to let people know about the health benefits offered by the mixed meal.
Endsley had the idea to open up a Lima smoothie shop as early as 2008. Out on the West Coast, where Endsley was raised, smoothie shops have been a staple of the Californian diet for decades. When he moved out to Ohio to be closer to his family, he missed the fruit-based drink until a quick trip to the West Coast convinced him to open up his own store in Lima. He had thought, for a decade, that somebody would beat him to the punch.
“Somebody’s got to do it, I thought. Then it became, ‘I’ll do it,’” Endsley said. “It took me a while to get the money from savings, and some friends knew my vision.”
Dash & Joey’s, named after Endsley’s two dogs, opened in June 2017 at 435 S. Eastown Road, Lima, after finding financial backing.
Today, business is regular, but he still is looking for new customers. Part of the difficulty, Endsley said, is that plenty of people in the area aren’t exactly sure what a smoothie is or does. Sometimes, they conflate the thick drink with a dessert or some sort of quick snack, but Endsley emphasized the health benefits of a custom-made smoothie that is thick enough to fill someone up for a few hours without as many calories.
“I make every one of these — or the employees make them — how I would like them,” Endsley said. “If you made me a smoothie, I’d ask: ‘What’s in this? How much sugar is in it?’”
Today, Endsley sees a revolving door of people who recognized the fresh taste and health benefits of his product, and that’s helped create a community of customers that Endsley often recognizes as soon as they walk through the door. It’s what people expect out of local business owners, he said.
“People like it when I’m here and they learn who I am,” Endsley said. “Even if you come in every few weeks, I’d know who you were. Being local, you kind of have to be there.”
For those on the fence about smoothies, Endsley encourages everyone to at least give them a try.
“Lima deserves good stuff for the people that live here. It can be frustrating when people don’t believe that,” Endsley said. “We don’t have to be like that, but people have to come out to support their local businesses.”
Reach Josh Ellerbrock at 567-242-0398.