Sugar Shack for sale

Published: May. 10, 2022 at 4:43 PM EDT|Updated: May. 10, 2022 at 6:49 PM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - It’s one of the most popular stops for visitors of Tybee Island.

But after more than five decades the Sugar Shack is preparing to say goodbye.

“We’re not a fancy place, we’re not a fancy five-star dining establishment,” says Sugar Shack co-owner Russell Grosse.

But for the past 50 plus years the Sugar Shack has been a Tybee staple.

“We opened up on a Spring day in March of 1971. We didn’t have a clue what we were doing.”

Russell Grosse likes to joke that his family first bought the Sugar Shack for peanuts.

Because, technically, they did.

“We had walked up and down this beach selling peanuts, and that’s what we used to buy this.”

Making an investment, at the time, they believed would be short term.

“The original plan was it would pay for college for all of us and then we’d sell it,” said Grosse.

Of course, as we know, that’s not what would happen.

Instead, for the past 51 years Grosse and his family haven’t been able to walk away.

“This is, how do you say it, it’s work that makes people happy. Nobody walks away from an ice cream place with a frown on their face. It really is that kind of business.”

A job sweeter than the ice cream they serve, which made this decision that much tougher.

“We all kind of reached the point where we decided it’s time,” Grosse said.

The Sugar Shack now up for sale.

“I expect that by the end of the summer or even the 4th of July, we’ll be done.”

Grosse expects things to move quickly, which is bittersweet.

“It will be weird, because we’ve done it for so long.”

But despite saying goodbye, the memories Russell’s family made here and shared with countless visitors, won’t simply melt away.

“What sticks out to me are all the people that come in with a love for the place.”

A place that will forever been frozen in time.

Grosse says he isn’t sure if the future owners of the building will continue to run it as an ice cream shop, but selfishly he hopes they do.

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