2018-02-12 / Front Page

Local pizza maker a mainstay of hometown

By Steven Kovac
810-452-2684 • skovac@mihomepaper.com

Aaron Treve of Treve’s Pizza is hard at work preparing for the lunch rush at his Brown City location on Main Street. 
Photo by Steven Kovac Aaron Treve of Treve’s Pizza is hard at work preparing for the lunch rush at his Brown City location on Main Street. Photo by Steven Kovac BROWN CITY — It’s not hard to find Aaron Treve. He’s seldom more than ten feet from his kitchen at Treve’s Pizza on Main Street.

“My family opened this restaurant in the summer of 1993,” said Aaron. “I’ve been here ever since. I was 12 years-old when I started folding boxes and washing dishes. I really jumped into it when I turned 18. The pizza business is all I know. I never really prepared for anything else.”

Aaron continued, “My family moved to Brown City from Almont in 1991. My dad (Dale) worked as a heating and cooling engineer at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Pontiac. My mother (Marilyn) worked as a waitress.

“We got introduced to the pizza business when my brother Ken acquired a halfinterest in a pizzeria in Imlay City. That didn’t last too long. Then Mom and Ken opened up here in Brown City. Now, I run this branch, and Ken runs the Treve’s in Marlette. Dad never wanted anything to do with the business,” said Aaron.

“A few years ago we opened a third store in Croswell. That branch closed because we ran out of family. Nobody looks out for the best interest of your business like family.”

Aaron said that, combined, the Brown City and Marlette locations employ between 20 and 30 people.

The Brown City restaurant has seating for 24 and does a good carry-out business. Though pizza is the specialty of the house, Treve’s also makes subs, wraps, salads, and calzones. “Calzones are like a giant hot pocket,” explained Aaron. “They are a folded pizza stuffed with other items. Somewhat like a stramboli.”

When asked if he planned to add any other things to the Treve’s menu, Aaron said, “No, in fact, we are trying to simplify. We recently dropped burgers from our menu. We want to get back to our roots, concentrate on the basics that work so well for us.”

Treve’s of Brown City is decked out in Green Devil décor, and the walls of the kitchen are hung with numerous ‘thank you’ cards and letters from the schools, the city, and from individuals.

“We help the community and we try to do everything we can for the local school,” said Aaron.

“Treve’s is one of Brown City’s top supporters and contributors,” said City Manager Clint Holmes, who frequently visits the restaurant for lunch. “Few people are more supportive of our police, fire department, and community as a whole than Aaron.”

When asked what is his favorite part about being in business, Aaron answered, “Being involved in a tight-knit town. I really enjoy being able to provide employment for the children of people I went to school with.

“You grow up in a small town and all you want to do is get out. That’s how many young people think. I know, I was young once too. But I have learned that as you get older, you really come to embrace it. I love it here,” said Aaron.

Elementary school principal Sean Hagey said of Treve’s, “Treve’s Pizza has always supported the elementary school. Each year they donate a gift certificate for the book fair as part of the raffle. Aaron is a wonderful supporter of the school. Whenever we ask, he is more than willing to help out.”

School Superintendent Neil Kohler commented about Aaron’s love for and dedication to young people, which has earned him recognition as this year’s Friend of Youth.

“As the Friend of Youth, Aaron will represent Brown City at the Thumb Meet of Champions later this spring,” said Kohler. “The Board of Education and I think Aaron is a great choice. He went to Brown City High School and knows what it means to be a Green Devil.”

Kohler continued, “Treve’s Pizza has been a staple in the community since I was a kid. They have always been great supporters of our school and community. They are one of the main sponsors of the Pink Out Game we play every other year against Marlette to benefit the fight against breast cancer. It’s great to see Aaron and Ken have their friendly competition around that event.

“Treve’s is not only always willing to donate to our different teams and school clubs,” said Kohler, “but one of the greatest contributions Aaron has given over the years is through his providing jobs to many of our high school students. For many of the kids, working at Treve’s is their first job. Aaron is willing to patiently work with them, teaching them about hard work and responsibility.”

Aaron, 36, is a Class of 2000 grad of Brown City High School. He has lived in North Branch for the past six years. He has a four-year-old daughter named Sophia.

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