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Something to crow about: Progressive open house
ROOSTER Juice--Pic 1
Rooster Juice marketing intern Jessica Perusse and owner Suzanne Forsberg show off one of the new outdoor fireplaces being added as part of an overhaul of the unique haunt. - photo by JASON CAMPBELL/The Bulletin

It would have been easy for Jessica Perusse to find a way to get people into Rooster Juice.

After all, that’s basically her gig – as the haunt’s new marketing intern, Perusse works closely with owner Suzanne Forsberg to try and convert the unique space’s charm into something that’ll attract customers.

But that’s not what she did. Sure she came up with an event that started at Rooster Juice and ended there. That’s what she’s supposed to do. But Perusse came up with a unique and innovative idea that also managed to get people into a dozen other Manteca businesses in the process.

A progressive community open house, she calls it. A way for regular customers to get out into the community and meet many of the faces behind the small businesses – many of the “mom-and-pop” stores that are commonly talked about – that dot the cityscape and bring charm and personality to the table.

Yes, it will still be a Rooster Juice event – food and drink specials are in the works, and a progressive raffle, with the proceeds going to benefit The Wounded Warrior Project, will create a festive and fun atmosphere that she thinks will help draw more people out for the September 14 event.

Plus it’ll be a great opportunity for the business to show-off the host of improvements that it recently made.

“When people think about the community, we want them to think about Rooster Juice,” Perusse said. “We want them to know that we’re involved and we network and communicate with other businesses, and we want them to know that this is a place that they can come and support and know that it represents their community.”

Things have been rocketing for the small restaurant/bar since they reopened following a long hiatus that started when construction began on what was Manteca’s only discount movie theater – converting it into Big Lots! and leaving the Forsberg’s without any power or a timetable for their return.

In the last month they outfitted the sidewalk border with white a wrought iron gate, replaced the glass door with an industrial roll-up, installed outdoor fireplaces and mounted big screen televisions.

The move wasn’t without some controversy. The City of Manteca stepped in when they found out some of the work was done without the necessary permits, but things have since been ironed out.

And now it’s time for a community unveiling.

Perusse says that the response from regular customers has been overwhelmingly positive, especially among those that are looking forward to coming down and watching football games on the added televisions.

The restaurant recently added Fagundes Meats and Catering as its meat provider in an attempt to overhaul the menu. In addition to the homemade sides, the spot is gaining a reputation as a popular lunchtime eatery.

“The layout is a lot more open than it was before, and I think people that recognize that really appreciate it,” Perusse said. “We’ve got a new menu and new TVs and people are excited about the things that we have going on. We’re looking forward to having them down here for that event, and to promote Manteca’s business community.”

The progressive community open house, which takes place on Saturday, Sept. 14, will run from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., with stops at Delicato Family Wineries, Aaron’s, Café Aroma, the Olive Oil Pantry, Fagunde’s Meats and Catering, Jungle Red Beauty Supply and Salon, Frugal Frames, Planet Beach and a host of other businesses. Rooster Juice is located at 1325 W. Yosemite Avenue. For more information, call (209) 665-4414 or search for Rooster Juice.

To contact Jason Campbell, email or call (209) 249-3544.