AURORA — The empty Zeppe’s Pizzeria location in Aurora has been filled with a new Domino’s Pizza shop, which celebrated its grand opening last month.

Owner Muhammad Qureshi, who also owns Domino’s shops in Middlefield and Orwell, said the location is one the company has been eyeing.

"It’s a nice town," he said of Aurora. "Domino’s always wanted to be here, and when Zeppe’s moved out, we had an opportunity to move in, so we did."

Qureshi, a Middlefield resident, said he bought his first shop eight years ago in Middlefield after working for the company five years before that.

"It’s been great," he said. "Aurora is giving us more loving than we expected, actually, which is awesome."

He said the shop employs about 10, including some workers from other shops who have been helping the store get started.

"We’re very excited to be here," he said, adding he looks forward to becoming part of the community. The manager of the Aurora Domino’s Pizza is Jeff Nadack.

Qureshi got his start with Domino’s 13 years ago at the age of 18 or 19 not long after arriving in the United States from Pakistan.

"I just wanted to get my education from the U.S.," he said. "It was always kind of a dream to do so. Once I graduated from school over there, I just had to find a way to get here and finish my studies here."

He earned his GED and enrolled at Kent State University where he earned a degree in business administration. 

After his start with Domino’s, he took five years to save up money and work his way up the chain of command from shift manager to assistant manager to partner.

His favorite pizza is a personal pan veggie pizza, which includes mozzarella cheese, spinach, jalapeno peppers, pineapple, tomatoes, black olives, onions, green peppers and mushrooms. He also adds a little bit of hot sauce.

"The pan pizza is just the beginning and end of pizza — amazing," he said.

Hours of operation are 10:30 a.m. to midnight on weekdays and Sundays and 10:30 a.m. to 1 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays.

For more information or to order pizza, call 330-554-9594.