Edmonton

Thieves ransack rink concession stand, take everything but the kidney beans

When Janina Zarowny realized her concession stand in a small northern Alberta arena had been ransacked, she was left shaking her head.

'It's just weird, weird stuff they took' from arena near Westlock, business owner says

Janina Zarowny's concession stand was raided by thieves a week after she opened for business. (Janina Zarowny)

When Janina Zarowny realized her concession stand in a small northern Alberta arena had been ransacked, she was left shaking her head.

The thieves made off with pretty much everything except the kitchen sink. They even took her collection of Tupperware.

"It was a complete disaster," said Zarowny, who operates the small kitchen space in the Linaria Arena northwest of Westlock.

"I had glass from one end of my kitchen to the other. I'm pretty sure there was glass in my deep fryer."

I had no food left except for kidney beans.-Janina Zarowny

Zarowny said all of her food and spices were gone. She only had one bowl left. 

"I had no food left except for kidney beans," she said. "They left me the buns. That was it." 
Janina Zarowny had only been operating her arena concession stand for a week before it was ransacked by thieves. (Janina Zarowny/Facebook)

Zarowny said the break-in has been a huge blow. While the thieves only made off with about $2 worth of nickels and dimes, she estimates the theft has cost her $2,000 in supplies. 

She had only been operating the concession stand for a week before she was raided on Jan 7.

She said RCMP are investigating.

She has no idea who could be responsible but guesses they must have been desperate. 

"What do you do with stolen Tupperware? I've been watching buy-and-sell sites to see what comes up. It's just weird, weird stuff they took."

'Heartbroken'

It had always been a dream to run her own small business — and she relished serving up home-cooked soups, stews, cheesy chili fries and cinnamon buns to her customers.

The space had been unoccupied for months and she was happy to bring the business back to life. 
Janina Zarowny estimates the thieves made off with $2,000 in supplies. (Janina Zarowny)

Zarowny said it had always been her dream to run a small business, and she figured the concession stand would be a good place to start.

"I love to cook, I have five kids and they keep me really busy and I just wanted to give back to the community, be more involved," she said. 

"I'm heartbroken. I am absolutely devastated."

Thanks to some borrowed burgers and donations from the community, Zarowny is re-opening her kitchen on Thursday night with a limited menu. 

She said the incident has reminded her just how generous her small town can be.

"It's insane how much support I've got. It is absolutely amazing.

"I'm trying to pick up the pieces and trying to start over ... It's been difficult but I'm doing it."