1. Business

Carrollwood's Rocket Fizz packs candy and blasts from the past

Soda lovers can quench their thirst with one of more than 300 varieties of soda.
Soda lovers can quench their thirst with one of more than 300 varieties of soda.
Published May 29, 2014

CARROLLWOOD — Steve and Marianne Banales are finding that owning their own business is pretty sweet. Literally.

The couple recently opened Rocket Fizz, a soda, candy, gift and gag emporium unlike any other. The 2,200-square-foot store in the Grand Plaza in Carrollwood houses thousands of candy options. Many items are a blast from the past, prompting customers to exclaim, "Ooh, remember these?" Rocket Fizz also carries an extensive selection of gag gifts, concert posters and life-size cardboard cutouts.

And then there are the sodas. More than 300 varieties line the walls. Flavors range from traditional root beer and birch beer to classics like Bubble Up and Faygo to quirky options like Bacon and Buffalo Wing. Other varieties, such as the Judge Wapner Soda and the dictator-inspired line (Stalinade, anyone?) are sure to elicit a chuckle.

Rocket Fizz even offers sodas with custom labels to commemorate any occasion.

The Banaleses discovered Rocket Fizz two years ago while on a trip to their hometown of Camarillo, Calif. When they began searching for a franchise that would allow them to work hand in hand with their four children, Rocket Fizz seemed like a perfect fit. So far, it is exceeding their expectations.

"It is just such a happy place!" Marianne said.

In fact, the Banaleses are gearing up for the opening of their second Rocket Fizz store, set to open in Lakeland in mid June.

The Carrollwood store is at 14365 N Dale Mabry Highway. Hours are 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday; 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday; 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Friday; and 10 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Saturday. Facebook page: Rocket Fizz Tampa. Call (813) 898-2742.

Brian Creadon takes a no-frills approach to massage in his latest business venture, Massaggio, located in the heart of Westchase.

Creadon recently sold Westchase Physical Therapy & Medical Supply in order to pursue a fresh start. He wanted to bring something new to Westchase that would still allow him to make use of his background in physical therapy and his commitment to client care.

As Creadon explored his options, he found himself asking, "If I just want to get a massage with no frills and no hassle, where would I go?" He didn't have an answer.

That is when the idea for Massaggio was born, with an atmosphere that's professional, yet relaxing and the focus is strictly on massage.

Massages are tailored to a client's individual needs. A one-hour massage is $39. Creadon explained that the lower price allows clients to enjoy the many benefits of regular massage. Of course, every now and then a little extra pampering is in order, which is why Massaggio offers optional add-ons to enhance the massage experience. Clients can choose from hot or cold packs, essential oils or a hand/foot scrub.

Massaggio is in the Lynmar Business Plaza at 12639 Race Track Road. Hours are 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily. Walk-ins are welcome.

Visit Call (813) 749-7101.

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