After operating Cosmic Pizza in Bozeman for the past 17 years, owner Ken Burger is preparing to offer his out-of-this-world fare at a new, larger location on West Main Street in Belgrade.
Burger decided to open a second location after acquiring a restaurant beer and wine license that can’t be used at Cosmic’s current 19th and Main Street address in Bozeman. Rather than search for a second location in the bigger city, the Belgrade resident decided to look for a place closer to home.
“I didn’t want to compete with myself in Bozeman,” Burger said Tuesday, while taking a break from hooking up the pizza ovens in the new Belgrade shop. “I’ve been given an opportunity I couldn’t pass up.”
Burger has been at work since July preparing the 2,500-square-foot restaurant space at 27 W. Main Street. The second store, which he expects to open in early November, will be more than twice the size of Cosmic Pizza in Bozeman.
Belgrade’s expanded menu will include Cosmic’s signature pizzas and sandwiches. Also featured will be pizza by the slice, which Burger hopes will be popular with neighboring business people and high school students.
As in Bozeman, Cosmic in Bozeman will offer delivery. Burger plans to employ about 20 part-time and full-time workers.
Burger hopes the shop will fill the niche for another affordable, family-friendly place to eat in Belgrade. He is decorating the dining room to attract families and provide a fun atmosphere.
He said the timing appears to be right, as he has heard a lot of positive feedback from his neighbors in the business community who are excited about the “groundswell downtown.” After Cosmic opens, he added, it will be the first time the whole block of Main Street between Broadway and Weaver has been occupied since the recession.
He added that the welcoming attitude extends to City Hall, where officials have been “great to work with.
“Whether it was me or someone else, something like this needed to come to downtown,” Burger said. “Belgrade is open for business.”