Nancy Edmonds Hanson
Jersey Mike’s Subs opened its doors Wednesday in south Moorhead, offering a new dining option in the redeveloped Southmoor Square.
Located in the southeast quadrant of Exit 1 – where Interstate 94 meets Highway 75 – the new sandwich shop specializes in subs made in the style immortalized 67 years ago on the Jersey Shore. Freshly cut cheeses and meats are piled on fresh-baked buns with lettuce, onion and tomato and topped with a generous splash of “the juice,” a combo of red wine vinegar and olive oil.
A.J. Hofer, who owns the store along with his father Tim, was on hand this week for the opening. He says the strip mall redeveloped over the past two years by Enclave has long been on his radar. His store adjoins Murphy’s Pub. O’Reilly Auto Parts also plans to move into new quarters in Southmoor in 2024.
“This location just makes sense. It’s close to the college campuses. It’s surrounded by businesses with employees who go out for lunch, and it’s really visible at night and easy to get to,” Hofer says. “With our two stores on Veterans Boulevard in West Fargo and close to 52nd Avenue South in Fargo, south Moorhead gives us great coverage in the community.” The Hofers also operate Jersey Mike’s locations in Grand Forks and Rapid City.
The first Jersey Mike’s opened in Point Pleasant, New Jersey, in 1956. Hofer says the menu that was a hit with the beach crowd out East is still a hit today, with Mike’s Original Italian a perennial best-seller. In addition to cold subs built on bread baked daily in the shop, it includes a roster of hot cheesesteaks featuring traditional beef or chicken.
Hofer has been in the food business since graduating from North Dakota State University in 2008 with a degree in business administration. He started with Qdoba locations in Brookings, Aberdeen and Watertown. The Hofers opened their first Jersey Mike’s shop in Rapid City in 2018 after observing that the franchise, with more than 2,500 stores nationwide, had none in North or South Dakota.
“One thing we’re proud of, along with the great food, is the stuff we do in the community,” he points out. The Moorhead shop’s opening this week includes a fund-raiser for the Matthew’s Voice Project, a local campaign to provide needed supplies to homeless teens in Moorhead, Fargo and West Fargo. The company also celebrates March as its Month of Giving. In 2023, its 13th annual event raised $21 million for more than 200 local charities.
Jersey Mike’s Subs, located at 814 30th Ave. S., is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. seven days a week. Curbside pick-up is available for orders placed through the Jersey Mike’s app or online at www.jerseymikes.com.