Joseph F. Berenato
Feel like family at Ohana Juice Bar
When Dan and Marcy McAnney were looking for extra income, they originally had no idea in which direction to go.
“My wife and I are both pastors; that’s the reason we never expected to start our own business. We worked at the high school and we pastored a church. We felt like it would be helpful to have some sort of income to help the church do the things that churches need to do to help people. We prayed about it, and we felt like God said to open a business,” Dan McAnney said.
They ran through several ideas, but none of them really seemed to be the right avenue. Soon, however, inspiration struck.
“We were not, at the time, these super-healthy people that just work out all the time and ate all the right foods and things like that, but we were health-conscious. The idea of a juice bar came to mind, and we had been to two of them in different places, but there were none around here. We started thinking about that, and seemed to be the thing that could really be good, because it did address physical health and it seemed like it would be an enjoyable thing to do,” McAnney said.
When attempting to figure out a name for their new enterprise, they decided on Ohana, which means “family” in Hawaiian.
“We’re big on family, as far as our own family and our church family as well, and the idea of people being able to feel like they’re involved in family in some way. I know it’s a business, but we wanted people to feel like they’re welcome and they’re accepted and loved,” McAnney said.
McAnney said that, at Ohana Juice Bar, acceptance is a major factor in their business model.
“For us, it’s definitely more than just a place for us to sell healthy products; we’re really hoping to minister to people through that avenue. My wife and I and our daughters—we’re certainly not looking to force anything on anyone—want to be able to minister to people and help them feel loved. Everybody wants to be loved, and we do like to help people as much as possible to feel like they’re loved there,” McAnney said.
That being said, McAnney noted that that isn’t part and parcel with every transaction at Ohana Juice Bar.
“Some people come in, grab a juice and leave. It’s not like it happens with every customer,” he said.
Open since May of 2017, Ohana Juice Bar offers a variety of healthy choices for its customers.
McAnney said that one of his favorites is the açaí (pronounced ah-sah-EE) bowls.
“Those are just delicious meals, and they’re so healthy for you. On the East Coast, we’re just beginning to understand this particular fruit from Brazil. Those bowls are really good,” he said.
Another option McAnney discussed is Ohana’s smoothies.
“Our smoothies are like a meal, some more than others. Some have oats in it, and peanut butter and things like that. I don’t know if people realize that they’re not just going there for a shake, even though some people think of it that way, which is great. The number of calories and the nutrients that are in these things; unless people request it, we don’t put ice or any flavor powders or sugars or anything ... They don’t have everything you need, of course, but we do try to make sure they serve a purpose,” he said.
McAnney said that there was more to Ohana Juice Bar than bowls and smoothies, too.
“Some people don’t realize that we have wraps and salads, so those are good things to keep in mind. It’s not just a place you can get a drink; you can get toasts or wraps or salads ... And, of course, we have juice,” he said.
In addition to their current location, McAnney said that they are planning on opening a second location at Adrenaline at 29 S. Washington Street.
“They used to have a juice bar in there, and they approached us and asked if we would be interested in opening an Ohana inside the gym when it opens up. We are, and we’re planning to do it. We’ve met a few times to work out whatever we need to work out. When they open, we’ll be in there, too ... We’re looking forward to it, and hopefully it will be something that’s good for the community as well,” McAnney said.
Ohana Juice Bar is located at 10 Central Avenue. For more information, call (609) 481-2353 or visit ohanajuicebar.com.