By: Shreya Pahwa
On October 1st, 2017, the Anton Family of McQuarrie’s Tea & Coffee Merchants was presented with a star on the Greg Botting Broadway Walk of Stars.
The Anton family’s history on Broadway began when John Anton became involved in Russ McQuarrie’s store at 622 Main St. Russ hired John for odd jobs, and later hired him full time to maintain the fleet of catering trucks.
In 1975, John and Lawrence Magee purchased Russ McQuarrie Ltd from Russ, and relocated the coffee and retail operation to 708 Broadway Ave (formerly the Broadway Bakery), while continuing the bakery and catering operations at 622 Main St. In 1983, the catering side of the business was sold off, and the focus turned to supplying coffee and brewing equipment to various offices and business around Saskatoon. In the 1990s, Lawrence and John divided the business – with Lawrence taking the office coffee trade, and John holding on to the retail side.
Over the years, John has been joined in the operation of McQuarries by his wife, Dixie-Lynn, by their children, Adam, Evan, Darcey, and Curtis, and by their daughters-in-law, Kim and Sherry. In 2011, John passed the business over to Adam and Evan, who operated it together until Evan’s untimely death in 2016. His loss was a huge shock to the family, and his absence will be felt for many years to come. John and Dixie-Lynn still play an advisory role and help out during busier times of the year.
The Greg Botting Broadway Walk of Stars is an initiative created to recognize outstanding contributors to the Broadway area, specifically in the categories of: Builder, Supporter, Merchant, Artist, and Leader. The program’s namesake, Greg Botting, was a long-time merchant on Broadway and Chair of the BBID; a man who’s passion for Broadway and boundless commitment to community left a permanent and memorable mark.
Here are a few photos from the unveiling event!