“If you’re not a good pizza, you’re not going to be around for 59 years.” So says Joe Aurelio of the pizza chain his father started in 1959.
Joseph A. Aurelio Jr. opened the first Aurelio’s Pizza at 2041 Ridge Rd. in Homewood, Ill., and expanded into an old warehouse there at 18162 Harwood Ave. in 1977, creating their flagship restaurant. In 2001, the senior Aurelio passed away and son Joe took over the family business.
Aurelio’s continues to grow and has expanded its slice of the pizzeria market with 40 locations in six states.
This year is its 59th anniversary. “It’s a big deal because we started in 1959, and we’re running promotions all year,” said Joe. “We’re kicking off a trivia contest on Facebook Live on 5/9 (in keeping with the theme) that will run through the summer with fabulous prizes.”
Later this year, Aurelio's will attach golden tickets to random boxes of pizza for pickup or delivery entitling winners to a pizza a week for a year.
In addition, Aurelio’s is making 59 surprise deliveries by Joe, franchise owners and celebrities. For example, Joe and former Chicago Blackhawk Jeremy Roenick delivered pizza to the Chicago Police and raised $8,000 for a bulletproof vest in memory of Cmdr. Paul Bauer.
Joe is excited to announce that Aurelio's is opening a store near Wrigley Field at Clark and Grace Streets and hopes to be open for the Crosstown Classic, when the Cubs host the White Sox May 11-13.
“Thank you to our loyal customers,” said Joe. “We are committed to the community and giving back, and we hope to be around another 59 years.”
Tomato Bar Pizza Bakery
2310 LaPorte Ave.
79 U.S. Hwy. 41 Suite 220