Happy Joe’s Pizza & Ice Cream has long been one of the Potts family’s favorite restaurants, so when given the opportunity to bring the iconic Midwestern brand back to St. Louis, they jumped at the chance.

Happy Joe’s announced Travis & Heather Potts as the brand’s newest franchisees, with the immediate goal to bring the beloved brand back to their hometown. The Potts’ goal is to recapture many of the family traditions they, and other families like their own, lost when Happy Joe’s closed in the city earlier this summer.

When we heard the St. Louis location was closing, it was heartbreaking,” Heather Potts says. “Lunches with our kids after early dismissals from school, countless memories from birthday parties at Happy Joe’s – all of those traditions were gone, so we wanted to do something about it.”

Travis Potts is a U.S. Army veteran, so the Potts’ made their dream of owning their own business a reality using Happy Joe’s veteran discount to save $10,000 off their initial franchise fee. Travis is an IT professional , while Heather works in finance at Bayer. Their goal is to find the perfect location in St. Louis and eventually make their pizzeria a family-run business incorporating their autistic son, their “Saint” Lewis. 

Happy Joe’s currently has a location in the suburb of St. Peters and plans on opening the new location within the St. Louis area limits in the first quarter of 2023. Happy Joe’s CEO and Chief Happiness Officer Tom Sacco said the brand aims to expand further into Missouri and needs more franchisees, like the Potts, to make it happen.

“Heather and Travis are the perfect pair to bring Happy Joe’s back to St. Louis,” Sacco says. “They know and love our brand, are passionate about running a good business, and, having grown up in the area, have deep roots in the community. We’re incredibly excited to work with them to bring the nostalgia and fun of Happy Joe’s back to the Lou.”

Fast Casual, Franchising, Growth, News, Happy Joe's Pizza & Ice Cream Parlor