Thursday, November 15, 2012

Worth the Drive

John A. Shanower and Mary "Polly" Roush Shanower grave.
The past couple blog posts of mine have been heavy on the drama—what with murder and messy marriages—so this week will be lighter.


My fourth cousin Rocky Corlin Shanower and his wife Courtney Yoder Shanower own Park Street Pizza in Sugarcreek, Tuscarawas County, Ohio. Rocky and I share the same great-great-great-grandparents, Johannes "John" Abraham Shanower (1814-1859) and Mary “Polly” Roush Shanower (1820-1896).
Park Street Pizza and me.
I suspect Courtney and I might share some relatives, as well. I don’t have solid evidence of that, but every once in a while I run across Yoders marrying into my family lines. One of these days I’ll have to dig a little deeper into the Yoders.

Park Street Pizza seems to be something of a family business. Rocky and Courtney have two young sons, Rigsby and Raleigh, who aren’t old enough to work there, but Rocky’s sister Sarah Shanower Whiddon and brother Edward Shanower have both worked there.

At Park Street Pizza they’re dedicated to making great food and inventing new recipes for delicious gourmet pizzas. Rocky and his crew often seem to be attending one pizza competition or another. The company strives to be planet-friendly, buying their ingredients locally when possible and using recyclable products. Rocky and Courtney seem pretty principled about all this. Watch this Youtube video—it’s less than five minutes—and see:

A few months ago David and I went out for dinner at Park Street Pizza. We drove. Since Sugarcreek, Ohio, is about 2500 miles away from where we live, we did a lot of other stuff on the way. Actually, Park Street Pizza wasn’t the only reason we went, but sampling their wares was definitely on my list of things to do while planning our trip.

Rustic Chicken Pesto pizza.

We didn’t get to meet Rocky and Courtney when we stopped in—previous plans prevented them from meeting up with us. But the pizza helped to make up for that. And we did meet some other Shanower relatives that evening.

I’d have been glad to try just about every item on the menu, but that wasn’t practical. I ordered the Rustic Chicken Pesto pizza, made with basil pesto sauce, grilled chicken, red onion, and mozzarella, parmesan, and feta cheeses. It tasted just as excellent as that description sounds.

Park Street Deluxe pizza.
David ordered the Park Street Deluxe, topped with pepperoni, mushrooms, Italian sausage, green peppers, red onions, and hot banana peppers.

For dessert David and I split an order of Campfire Fun Smores Ravioli. “It’s like smores without the camping,” says the menu. All I know is that they were yummy, and by the end of the meal I was stuffed.

Campfire Fun Smores Ravioli.
I asked David whether Park Street Pizza was worth the 2500 mile drive. He wasn’t too sure about that, although he liked his pizza. Maybe 2500 miles is a little excessive. But if you live nearer than we do to Park Street Pizza, I say definitely stop by and order some of their delicious food.

Park Street Pizza is located at 215 Dover Road NW (that’s the same as Route 39) in Sugarcreek, Ohio. You can visit Park Street Pizza on the web at

Or call 330/852-2993 for delivery. There’s a minimum $10 order for delivery, and the delivery charge varies depending where you’re located, so ask about that when you call. If I didn’t think the delivery charge for a distance of 2500 miles would be exorbitant, I could easily order a pizza myself right now.

Click on either menu page to view it larger.

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