Senior profile: Jack Julian and Will Mastrantuono

Art+by+Elena+Sherwood.+Seniors+Jack+Julian+and+Will+Mastrantuono+spend+their+time+away+from+school+hanging+out%2C+playing+soccer%2C+and+working+at+Smoothie+King.+Art+by+Elena+Sherwood.

Coco LeGrand

Art by Elena Sherwood. Seniors Jack Julian and Will Mastrantuono spend their time away from school hanging out, playing soccer, and working at Smoothie King. Art by Elena Sherwood.

The boys pull into the parking lot on South Kirkwood Road and park their cars, prepared for another night of work. After asking for time off during their senior spring break, the threat of getting fired hangs over their heads as they enter the building. With the fear of the self-proclaimed “Smoothie Boys” being separated by the management staff, the boys clock in and continue to do what they know best: make smoothies.

Jack Julian and Will Mastrantuono began working at Smoothie King over the summer, along with five other friends who convinced them it was the best place to be. The group of boys first met while playing for the Kirkwood soccer team their freshman year. Ever since then, their friendships have developed from on the field to on the clock. 

Being [at Smoothie King] is fun because it’s another time to hangout with everyone.”

— Jack Julian

“A couple of our friends were working there for a year at that point, so we jumped on the train as soon as possible to try to have a good time at work,” Julian said. “We’re always together regardless of if we’re at work or not. Being [at Smoothie King] is fun because it’s another time to hangout with everyone.”

Any night someone walks into the Kirkwood Smoothie King, they will most likely see two or three of the “Smoothie Boys” closing down shop. During this time, they are able to mix it up and talk. The boys describe the group of friends they work with as a family who rely on one another to make Smoothie King run as smoothly as possible.

“[Coming in everyday] is always welcoming, friendly and uplifting. It just makes you happier,” Mastranuono said. “It’s probably one of the best decisions I made throughout high school. No matter how busy it gets or how bad your day was beforehand, it’s always going to be a good time.”

No matter how busy it gets or how bad your day was beforehand, it’s always going to be a good time”

— Will Mastrantuono

But, all good times come to an end. As tensions rose between the workers and the management, the boys contemplated leaving Smoothie King for good. When the majority of the staff wanted to leave for a spring break trip, it was the last straw for management. As a result, two members of the group were fired and another quit. The friends were separated until a new manager took over and rehired the boys back into business.

“There were periods of time where it looked pretty bad, just getting pushed around and not listened to. We did not really know what was going to happen,” Julian said. “The new manager is really laid back. They are not just about making money but also making sure we are treated right, the customers are treated right and everything in the process is treated right.”

Although their manager, Justin Hefner, has only been working at their location for three months, he said he has already noticed their hard-working attributes and everything they bring to the table.

“They are both really fun,” Hefner said. “It’s really great working with a team that gets along, gets everything done and is able to have fun at the same time.”

After their closing shifts end, the boys like to spend time together, either grabbing a bite to eat or hanging out at someone’s house. On Friday and Saturday nights, however, almost all the boys at Smoothie King play for the Sharks, an indoor soccer league that allows them to continue the activity that brought them together in the first place: soccer.

“We have enjoyed playing soccer our whole lives. I would rather be doing that than sitting inside playing video games,” Julian said. “It’s casual. It’s just something to do with your friends to have fun.”

I am going to miss the whole atmosphere of being excited and pumped up to go to work everyday and getting to spend the time with my friends.”

— Will Mastrantuono

As the group’s time at KHS comes to an end, the boys prepare to part ways and attend different colleges across the country. They will be leaving their jobs at Smoothie King and taking the life lessons they learned to their next destinations.

“I have really learned how to deal with the customers, but also with the management. Having patience has taught me that everyone else comes first,” Mastranuono said. “I am going to miss the whole atmosphere of being excited and pumped up to go to work everyday and getting to spend the time with my friends.”