Hog Fathers BBQ has come to the Mon Valley, and owner Frank Puskarich is ecstatic.

“What’s wrong with the Valley, I ask people. Nothing,” he said Thursday afternoon, while discussing his fourth barbecue restaurant, all in Washington County.

After having a deal fall through in Monongahela a year and a half ago, Puskarich has launched a Hog Fathers in the third-class city, at 243 E. Main St. It opened Monday, and location manager Josh Kunig said the first week “has gone great. The opening has been good.”

Hours there are 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.

His experience in 2018 did not dissuade Puskarich from trying to locate in Monongahela, where he is enamored of the retail and political climate. “They’re their own governing body, and they want business,” he said. “Unlike some towns that want to give you grief, Monongahela wants you to be here. There’s a good workforce, a large customer base and Route 88 is a busy road.

“Downtown Monongahela is opening new businesses. It is opening new businesses! There’s on-street parking and the businesses support one another. There’s always something going on in Monongahela.”

Hog Fathers restaurants also operate in Washington, Canonsburg and Washington Crown Center in North Franklin Township. A fifth location, in State College, is an all-catering facility.

Puskarich plans to expand further, but has nothing specific on the radar. “I would consider Uniontown. Greensburg is another great market. Bentworth is never out of the question – it’s my hometown.”

For now, though, he is eager to see what transpires in the Valley.

Business Writer

Rick Shrum joined the Observer-Reporter as a reporter in 2012, after serving as a section editor, sports reporter and copy editor at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Rick has won eight individual writing awards, including two Golden Quills.

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