TILTON — The Napoli Group LLC, which owns and operates over 30 McDonald's restaurants in New Hampshire, held an open house and ribbon-cutting ceremony at it's newly remodeled Tilton store on Thursday morning.
Master of ceremonies for the event was Larry Johnston, who managed the Laconia McDonald's when it opened in 1971, and who said that the Tilton McDonald's has been in business for almost 30 years and was virtually the only business in the Exit 20 area when it opened in 1986.
Located just off from I-93 and Rte. 3-11, the major access road to the Lakes Region, it soon became the second busiest McDonald's in the state and was a part of the major retail and commercial expansion of the early and mid-1990s in the Exit 20 area.
''This area has grown up around us,'' said Johnston, who introduced Napoli Group LLC owner Peter Napoli and his son, Sal, who presented a check to The (Northfield) Pines Community Center Executive Director Jim Doane as a way of showing their gratitude to the area for its support of their restaurant.
"I can't thank you enough for this donation,'' said Doane, who added that the funds would be used to help provide access to programs at The Pines for area children whose families can't afford the fees.
Johnston noted that contractor Roger Desjardins of Marceau Construction of Methuen, Mass., had been able to complete the project while then existing restaurant remained open for business, a challenging logistical situation, and noted that Desjardins had also been in charge of the recent remodeling of the Franklin McDonald's, which is also owned by the Napoli Group, as are the McDonald's in Laconia and Meredith.
Area supervisor Bob Benson, who lives in Maine, where the Napoli Group, which owns over 90 restaurants in New England, also has a large number of restaurants, praised the staff at the Tilton McDonald's for their dedication and team effort throughout the remodeling process.
The inside of the restaurant presents a new look for McDonald's. The decor comes in shades of black, brown and orange, providing a sleek, modern feel, giving the restaurant a more upscale casual dining feel. And, for added convenience, there are now two drive thru ordering lanes.
''We're looking to provide the kinds of things our customers want.'' said Peter Napoli, pointing out that he menu has changed as well in recent years to provide more salads and healthful choices like oatmeal for breakfasts.
Napoli, a Leominster, Mass., native started working with McDonald's in Fitchburg, Mass., in 1967, and says that his path to success is similar to that of other people who started their careers with McDonald's. ''Half of their current executives started out working at McDonald's. We've evolved over the years but that kind of opportunity for people who work for us is still there.,'' says Napoli.
Taking part in a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the newly remodeled McDonald's in Tilton are, front row, Sal Napoli of the Napoli Group; Tilton Police Chief Bob Cormier; Tilton Planning Board Chair Jane Alden; Selectboard chair Pat Consentino and Peter Napoli, owner of the Napoli Group. (Roger Amsden/for The Laconia Daily Sun)
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