Like many young people, Keith Nappi graduated from college not knowing what he wanted to do next. He'd studied philosophy and music; subjects that don’t point to a definitive next step. So, Nappi took a company job. But it didn't work out.
Nappi realized he wanted to be his own boss. And half-a-century later, the business he started is still standing.
Suburban Sports opened its doors in Berlin in July 1973, and has been at its current location on Webster Square Road since 2000.
Nappi said the business is his life, and it brings him great joy to help athletes in the area. “We’ve always been focused on cycling and skiing,” said Nappi, a Berlin High School alum and lifelong athlete. “In the end, it's like, those are the things that we do the best ... and that’s where we have the most impact on the community.”
Nappi said the shop welcomes athletes of all ages and skill levels. “My mission in life from being a philosophy major; I wanted to do something that would impact people positively,” he said. “Cycling and skiing are two of the unique sports that people can do for a lifetime."
Town officials were expected to visit Suburban Sports on Wednesday, Aug. 16 to mark the shop’s 50th anniversary.
Economic Development Director Chris Edge said, “Suburban Sports' combination of cycling, skiing, and accessories for both, have made them a leader in the industry, not just in Connecticut, but throughout New England."
“Their family atmosphere and making sure that the customer is always first is the key to their success," Edge added.
Suburban Sports is located at 25 Webster Square Road, and is open Monday through Wednesday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Thursday 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The shop also sells products online at suburbanskiandbike.com.