Building the Valley: Creating a ‘Buzz,’ Tarentum smoothie, juice bar lives up to its name

A smoothie and juice bar in Tarentum is living up to its name, creating a stir in the borough’s business corridor.

The Buzz, at 312 East Sixth Ave., touts itself as a healthy hangout offering energy tea, protein coffee and good vibes.

There are specialties offered, such as the Cinnamon Toast Crunch smoothie, which looks like a decadent milkshake, but co-owner Terry Ray promises beverages are packed with good-for-you ingredients.

“People are coming in to boost their energy in a healthy way,” Ray said.

“Our teas with a shot of B12 give you an insane boost, but you don’t get tired afterward like you do with a commercial energy drink.”

The Buzz, also co-owned by George Luck, will mark its one-year anniversary with a street party where everyone is invited.

Store owners were granted permission from borough council to close down a portion of Dickey Street from 5 to 9 p.m. May 19 for the festivities.

“In true Buzz fashion, we would like to celebrate our beloved business with a party for our patrons,” Ray said. “I want everybody to stop by, whether you’ve been here once or 100 times.”

A tent will be positioned between East Sixth and East Seventh avenues, where a DJ will spin dance tunes.

Council member Carrie Fox said the shake shop adds a nice mix to the offerings of the business district.

“They are great people,” Fox said. “It’s awesome to hear they are marking their anniversary.

“Tarentum is lucky to have a variety of businesses that offer something for everyone.”

Ray, who owns a similar location in Penn Hills, said opening in Tarentum was a fortunate fluke.

Through travels to a nearby distributor, Ray became familiar with the borough and decided to check Craigslist for open storefronts.

“We started looking around and realized this place is really nice,” he said. “We are very excited about everything Tarentum has done for us. We love it here.”

As an ode to the area, Ray created the Ram’s Blast — the Ram is the Highlands School District mascot — and it has become the most popular energy tea on the menu.

The fluorescent blue raspberry tea can be boosted with B12 for an extra jolt of energy.

On the smoothie side, the vitamin-packed banana pudding drink is the No. 1 seller.

Smoothies come with 21 vitamins and protein and, Ray said, help stave off hunger for up to three hours.

Ray credits a strong first year to word of mouth but also foot traffic from an increasingly busy business district.

“We weren’t planning on being in Tarentum but it is really building up here,” he said. “It’s been amazing.”

The Buzz is open daily, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays; and noon to 4 p.m. Sundays.

Tawnya Panizzi is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tawnya at 724-226-7726, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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