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The Boston Globe

Magazine

The great froyo gold rush

Are frozen yogurt entrepreneurs cashing in on the next big thing — or betting their fortunes on a fad?

JUST AFTER 7 O’CLOCK on a March evening, the lights go down in a function room at Maggiano’s Little Italy in the Back Bay. As a video flickers to life on a projection screen, an upbeat female voice begins narrating. “If you’re like most people, you’ve probably dreamed of what it would be like to be your own boss, make your own schedule, call the shots, and reap the benefits of your hard work,” she says. As the audience picks at stuffed mushrooms and fried zucchini, she chirps on: “There’s never been a better time to take control of your future.”

In Hollywood’s most famous moment of career advising, Mr. McGuire pulls Benjamin Braddock outside by the pool to deliver just one word: plastics. The opportunity being described in this restaurant basement will require four: self-serve frozen yogurt.

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