ROCKY HILL, Conn. (WTNH) – An 18-year-old Rocky Hill High School graduate opened up her own restaurant on Wednesday, making her one of the youngest in the business.
It’s an incredible story of a teen who worked hard, saved her money, and was able to purchase a restaurant. She’s focused on leaving a legacy.
“What other girl at 18, opening a restaurant, a real estate agent, and a server, bartender? Nobody, except for Sarah,” said Zahnobia Oaks-Caldwell, a friend.
Sarah Bezdelovs is a 2021 Rocky Hill High School graduate and is now the owner of a popular seaside restaurant on the banks of the Connecticut River.
“I’m not here to become a millionaire. I’m here to make sure people enjoy their time,” Bezdelovs said.
The 18-year-old is making sure that happens by serving up the first orders at the former Ferry Park Grill. Her restaurant is already attracting loyal customers.
“Very fresh tuna salad on rye bread, potato chips, and picnic. Prices are good,” said Mark Roy, a customer.
Bezdelovs’ journey to restaurant owner didn’t come overnight. Acquiring the funds took a lot of time and hard work.
“You know what, I worked all my life. I’m good at saving money, that’s what it is. I started small with jobs,” Bezdelovs said.
While managing this restaurant, Bezdelovs is also a realtor and a bartender for another restaurant. Her friends are always impressed by her discipline.
“She puts friends and enjoyment on the side, but work is her priority and getting it done,” Oaks-Caldwell said.
Her hard work ethic was instilled in her by her father who worked in construction. Since his unexpected death a few years ago, she’s been more determined than ever.
“He always taught me hard work and treat your employees right. He really inspired me. It’s been hard not having him here, but I know he’s watching out for me and he’s proud,” Bezdelovs said.
Despite the sign on top of the restaurant, Bezdelovs has renamed the restaurant “The Ferry Grill & Chill.” She’s taking it one day at a time, but her plan is to run the place for a long time.