Spotlight on Peter Asciutto
By: Bridget Huckabee
When Vac & Dash opened in downtown Albemarle in 2004, the name caused some puzzlement among the local population. Today, the name has become such an integral part of the local scenario that no one thinks twice about it. This, in more ways than one, is due to the personality and community activism of its owner, Peter Asciutto.
Today, Asciutto, a forward thinker, can look back on a variety of successes during his 13 years in Stanly County. His business has grown out of its original 2,500 square feet on Albemarle’s West Main Street to 8,000 square feet on South First Street. He joined the Chamber prior to opening Vac & Dash and served on the Chamber Board for many years, co-chairing the Business Expo committee for several of those years. The running club he started has brought economic benefits and thousands of dollars in charitable funds to the county. He ran a successful political campaign and was elected as a County Commissioner, serving from 2012 to 2016.
Born in New York State, Asciutto grew up in Florida. He found his love of running at Troy State in Alabama where he graduated with a business degree. Back in Florida he opened a business named Sunshine Sales Promotions offering UPS shipping and screen printing. He became a rep for Eureka vacuum cleaners and for 15 years served as the branch manager for its Atlantic region.
When he moved to Albemarle, he decided to combine his business with his hobby and sell vacuum cleaners and running gear. Vac & Dash was born. The Chamber encouraged him to fill a void by offering bicycle repair, citing constant calls for this service. Since that time, two bicycle shops have come and gone and Asciutto now offers that service exclusively from his First Street location. Harking back to his days in Florida, he offers UPS shipping, and screen printing. He also offers the unique service of race event timing. His inventory includes swim wear—Vac, Dash & Splash—disk golf supplies and, of course, the signature vacuum cleaner sales and repairs.
Asciutto feels his store is well located in Albemarle’s downtown, feeling its ‘quirkiness’ is more suited there than in a mall. He’s a big promoter of the downtown area and looks forward to its continued growth.
“I really look forward to Pfeiffer University’s planned presence in town,” he says. “I also hope the Stanly Community College culinary school can eventually come to downtown. This would be a double whammy for economic development for the whole of Stanly County.”
With Peter Asciutto the forward thinking continues.