Metro-East News

Gander Mountain to become Club Fitness, O’Fallon pizza shop opening St. Louis store

Club Fitness opening new locations

Club Fitness will open new locations in O'Fallon and Alton this year.
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Club Fitness will open new locations in O'Fallon and Alton this year.

The former home of Gander Mountain in O’Fallon will be transformed into a new Club Fitness location later this year.

A spokesperson for Club Fitness said the new gym is expected to open sometime in August. The fitness franchise will also open a new East Alton location in July.

More than a year ago, Gander Mountain CEO Marcus Lemonis took to Facebook to share the list of stores reopening as the company reemerged from bankruptcy. Temporarily closed stores, including the O’Fallon location, were to reopen in June 2018. That didn’t happen.

Club Fitness will take over the space at 120 Central Park Drive this fall.

Gym members who use the Fairview Heights location at 1953 W US-50 and the Alton gym at 1837 Homer M. Adams Parkway will have access to other gyms in the area. Those two existing locations will close when the new O’Fallon location opens.

Amenities at new locations will include: kids club, group exercise studio, tanning, massage chairs, smoothie bar, circuit equipment, strength equipment, cardio equipment, locker rooms, sauna, virtual cycle studio, personal training and pulse studio.

There will also be a women’s only studio with a variety of strength and cardio equipment in a separate space away from the main floor.

The St. Louis-based company has 23 locations in the region.

Fairview Heights Steak ‘n Shake won’t reopen, but company says Belleville still will

A temporary closure at Steak ‘n Shake in Fairview Heights is now permanent, the company has confirmed

The burger chain has permanently closed its restaurant at 10860 Lincoln Trail. It initially planned to remodel the shop, but those plans were canceled without an explanation.

Steak ‘n Shake has removed the Fairview Heights location from the company’s website and is listed as permanently closed online.

“We invite guests to visit our nearby locations in O’Fallon and Collinsville,” the company wrote in a message to the News-Democrat on Friday. “Our Belleville location is temporarily closed and will re-open under new franchise ownership.”

Both locations closed earlier this year after the company confirmed plans to remodel them. Eight Steak ‘n Shake restaurants in the St. Louis region temporarily closed about the same time.

Fox 2 reported closures in St. Louis at at Old St. Charles Road and Lindbergh in St. Ann and on Manchester Road in Ballwin.

Tom Murray, Steak ‘n Shake CFO of franchising, told Fox 2 that the company’s goal is to reopen closed restaurants with new franchise owners.

Steak ‘n Shake is the second restaurant to suddenly close in Fairview Heights. Smokey Bones closed suddenly early this month at 6118 North Illinois Street. The company did not explain why.

Family-owned O’Fallon pizza shop expands to St. Louis

Crazy about calzones? The family-owned pizza shop Flamentco’s The Place in O’Fallon will soon expand its reach by opening a new restaurant in downtown St. Louis.

The pizza shop will open on Cardinal’s Opening Day from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. April 4 at 418 South Tucker Blvd. in St. Louis.

“We’re eager and we’re hungry to take over the Midwest,” owner Brittany Flament said in June last year. “My goal is to build my kids an empire, so they have a legacy and can take it to another level.”

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Pizza from Flamentco’s The Place in O’Fallon. Provided

Three years ago, Flament and her husband, Navy Lt. Cory Flament, opened their first restaurant at 711 W U.S. 50 in O’Fallon.

The Place serves pizza, subs, wings and other pizza shop staples such as salad, pasta and breadsticks. But what you might not expect are big calzones, Philadelphia cheese steak fries and cannolis.

Creative pizza options on the menu include a macaroni and cheese pizza and the jungle pizza topped with pepperoni, sausage, mushrooms, onions, green peppers and black olives. There’s also a Cory’s signature pizza, a pie topped with red sauce, mozzarella, provolone, marinated tomatoes, shallots, genoa salami and bacon.

The pizza plans to freshen up the menu in St. Louis, where customers will be able to order pizza by the slice. The New York tradition of ordering a single slice is an option at the O’Fallon location, too.

Can’t wait until then? The O’Fallon location is open from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday. The restaurant is closed on Mondays.

One more thing...

Dairy-free ice cream is now available in downtown Belleville.

Crafty Sugar Company at 104 E. Main Street carries vegan ice cream pints from Clementine’s Naughty and Nice Creamery in St. Louis.

The National Ice Cream Retailers Association named Clementine’s the best new vegan ice cream in the country in 2018.

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Vegan flavors available at the candy shop include: Cashew Salted Caramel, the award winning Coconut Chocolate Fudge. Courtesy Clementine's

Vegan flavors available at the candy shop include: Cashew Salted Caramel, the award winning Coconut Chocolate Fudge. Vegan from ice cream from Clementine’s is all natural, made from scratch and in separate machines.

The store also offers cups, cones and ice cream sandwiches of Clementine’s ice cream, but only the “nice” flavors that don’t have alcohol in them.

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Cara Anthony covers restaurants and retail for the Belleville News-Democrat, where she works to answer readers’ questions about restaurant openings, business closures and the best new dishes in the metro-east. She attended Althoff Catholic High School in Belleville and grew up in East St. Louis.
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