Upper Merion is home to an abundance of incredible small businesses that many in our community have grown to know and love. The holidays are the perfect time to shine a spotlight on some of our favorite small businesses in King of Prussia. Each week, Upper Merion Township will feature a Small Business Hero and share their story. This week’s featured small business hero is the Zelli family of Peppers by Amedeo’s
They say timing is everything. While the restaurant Peppers has been in business for over 25 years, the Zelli family – who grew up in Upper Merion – took ownership in just February of this year. Well-seasoned in the restaurant industry, this family never could have predicted what lie ahead in just 6 short weeks after starting their new restaurant adventure together.
“Once we were shut down in March, of course we were genuinely concerned as we had just invested in this business 6 weeks earlier,” the Zelli’s said. However, as small business owners so often do, they got right to work making adjustments so they could support their staff and their customers. “We took advantage of the time and made some improvements that would have been a challenge to make while open for business, such as new floors, new phone system, and a new point of sale program which required re-training of the all of the staff. We also wanted to quickly create new affordable take-out promotions as we knew many people were out of work and struggling.”
The first Amedeo’s restaurant opened in King of Prussia in 1979, and over the years they have expanded to different locations and capacities, including Amedeo’s Too Restaurant in Jeffersonville, Putters Restaurant at the Jeffersonville Golf Course, as well as running the catering and banquet hall at the Jeffersonville Golf Course.
This latest restaurant venture is the former Peppers Italian Restaurant & Bar, which has now been renamed Pepper’s by Amedeo’s. “Pepper’s by Amedeo’s is very family friendly. We also offer live music on the weekends and weekly entertainment events depending on the time of year such as Trivia, Karaoke, Country line dancing & Corn Hole. It is also great place to have a variety of events from private family parties to business meetings, as there are multiple rooms to accommodate different size gatherings,” the Zelli’s said.
Even as we enter cold winter months, they are still offering great food available for takeout and dine-in in their heated outdoor dining tent. “Currently we have a huge very toasty, heated tented that is open on 2 sides for good ventilation, a great way to safely enjoy dinner, listen to live music, or host a private event in this beautiful setting.”
The Zelli Family is happy to be back in Upper Merion, where they grew up, and where they can continue to support the community they love. “We have many guests that live right in King of Prussia. However as we get to know our customers better, we realize that we have “regulars” coming from all over! We love to offer support to the Upper Merion school through fundraisers such as give-back nights, donations, and other opportunities like sponsoring the Upper Merion Township Library. We have also had several local businesses treating their own employees to Amedeo’s lunches and dinners – some even sending their employees home with meals for the whole family during the shutdown. Just another way of supporting each other!”
When asked to describe “what keeps you up at night”, the Zelli’s have a clear focus on the positives, the many opportunities ahead, and their love for the Upper Merion community. “We cannot express our continued gratitude for the unbelievable support we have received from our community, family and friends! It is because of this, we have been able to keep our business stable during unthinkable times. We know this unprecedented pandemic will pass and we look forward to growing and improving an already amazing business!”
Congratulations to the entire Zelli family, owners of Pepper’s by Amedeo’s in King of Prussia, for your nomination as Small Business Heroes!