31 Days of Frozen Dessert

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Each day of July we will be featuring a new place people can get a frozen dessert to cool off this summer. 

July 1: Parlor City Ice Cream, Marion

Parlor City Ice Cream has been catering its menu to their neighborhoods since 1962. While they were originally a Tastee Freeze, they still use a lot of the same recipes that locals enjoy. Also, their stores are a blast from the past with 1960s decor. Parlor City Ice Cream has more than 50 malt and shake flavors. A new addition to the menu is a Fruity Pebble Shake. “It’s kind of pretty and colorful,” said Angela Hoyt, owner of Parlor City Ice Cream. “The kids just love it.” 

July 2: Fruitzen, Cedar Rapids

Jason Spangler found a seasonal job in 2002 as the owner of Fruitzen when he wanted to write during the off season. However, over the years it has grown. He now owns the whole brands and will be selling packages so other people across the world can operate their own Fruitzen stand. The shaved ice for the stand does not come from cubes of ice but from an entire block which allows them to shave it thinner. The stand has 30 core flavors, 99 popular combinations and allows for people to create their own. 

July 3: Nelson's Ice Cream, Cedar Rapids

Nuzzled in the crooks of Newbo Market is Nelson’s Ice Cream, bringing back the tradition of craftsmanship. Their menu includes Unicorn Poop which has black raspberry, blood orange and lemon custard hand swirled. Mt. Trashmore is a French vanilla “littered” with M&Ms, cookie dough, Snickers and Butterfinger. “We are bringing back something that got lost a little bit,” said Adrienne Mills, manager and producer of ice cream. She and the owners desire to bring back the quality of ice cream. 

July 4: Hamburg Inn No. 2, Iowa City

Pies and politics come together for the diner on Linn Street in Iowa City. When Ronald Reagan was visiting West Branch, he asked one of his secret service personnel, who was a local, where they should grab a bite to eat. The agent suggested Hamburg Inn and since, dozens of politicians have stopped in the restaurant. The walls hold pictures of President Barack Obama, Governor Terry Branstad, the Clintons and many more. In 2004, they started the Coffee Bean Caucus. During any election, local or national, people can come participate in a strawpoll with coffee beans. Even politicians stop by to cast their bean. Since, the restaurant has been featured in television show West Wing and an episode of the Daily Show. However, their iconic frozen desserts includes a 22 ounce shake based on pie. “We take a whole piece of pie and put it in a shake,” said Seth Dudley, general manager. They blend it so customers still have the sensation of a shake with a few pieces of pie intertwined. Hamburg Inn will be introducing a new location soon at 2221 Rochester Ave. E. Enjoy one of their 22 ounce pie shakes for $7.99.

July 5: La Cantina, Cedar Rapids

“One scoop of vanilla ice cream deep fried and placed in an edible sugar and cinnamon-covered shell. Topped with whipped cream and chocolate sauce.” This describes the La Cantina fried ice cream that only costs $2.99. La Cantina has three locations including 102 2nd St. SE in Cedar Rapids, 5400 Edgewood Rd. NE in Cedar Rapids and 3217 7th Ave. in Marion. 

July 6: Dane's Dairy, Iowa City

On a street off of Highway One, behind a Casey’s General Store in Iowa City is Dane’s Dairy that holds “America’s healthiest frozen yogurt.” Only 8 frozen yogurt has eight health rewards including: no fat, no cholesterol, calcium fortified, low calories, low carbs, all natural, sweetened with fructose, safe for most diabetics and lactose intolerants. “It’s Iowa City’s secret and it’s good for people on diets,” said Mariah Ritter, manager.

July 7: Greyhound Cafe, Cedar Rapids

While ice cream may not be the main focus of Greyhound Cafe, they pride themselves in carrying local goods including local ice cream from Hansen’s Dairy in Cedar Falls. They have recently added the frozen desert to their shakes. Enjoy half pints or shakes at Greyhound Cafe which is in the Cedar Rapids Public Library.

July 8: Deb's Ice Cream and Deli, Cedar Rapids

Forget Happy Hours, Deb’s Ice Cream is home to Naughty Hour where customers can have two dips of ice cream for $2.99 between 2 and 3 p.m. Owner Deb Allick wants people to know that ice cream is not their only specialty. Deb’s has a fully lunch menu and salad bar during their hours 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.  

July 9: Great American Popcorn Company, Cedar Rapids

When people step into the Great American Popcorn Company, Bill Rieckhoff believes people are “stepping back in time.”  The building Great American Popcorn Company is in, off of Newbo, is more than 103 years old. Rieckhoff is proud of their old fashion product, building and service. All of their product is super premium with 14 percent butter fat content. The higher the butterfat content, the creamier the ice cream. 

July 10: Aspen Leaf Frozen Yogurt, Iowa City

When Saf Ibrik opened Aspen Leaf Frozen Yogurt and Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, he wanted a place for families to get together. The bright colored lounge area invites people to come in and relax. “I get up in the morning and I’m excited to come into work,” Ibrik said. “When you hand a kid a spoon of froyo they look like they have a Christmas gift.” However, frozen yogurt is not the only sweet treat they have to enjoy. Caramel apples, fudge and truffles also have a place on their menu. Products are made in house and Ibrik describes it as “the most beautiful taste.” 

July 11: Jon's Ice Cream Store and Restaurant, Tiffin

Jon’s Ice Cream Store and Restaurant is a location of options. They maximize their space so they can be accessible to all types of customers. Victoria Mufson, manager, explains that they have a small facility in Tiffin. Their building caters to a drive-through, walk-up and dining room. Customers also have the choice of hand dipped and soft serve ice cream. Mufson explains that they are unique for their choices they give customers and the “personal care and touch” they have in their service.

July 12: Dan & Debbie's Creamery, Ely

An old lumber yard in Ely was renovated for three years to become the family owned, Dan and Debbie’s Creamery. The family owners have been dairy farming for 20 years. Four out of the six children of Dan and Debbie help work at the creamery with the help of close friends. The store creates everything start to finish and even has a viewing room where customers can watch products being made such as ice cream or cheese curds. Speaking of ice cream, they have 12 signature flavors with rich, wholesome ingredients as described by Josie Rozum, one of the children who help run the creamery. In the front of the store, visitors can purchase other local products from food to crafts. “We wanted to highlight other Iowa made producers,” said Rozum. While they have been open for a year, they are still renovating a backroom into a party room that can be rented out, starting in August, for up to 40 people. “It’s been a year of a lot of learning,”  Rozum said.

July 13: Amana Colonies Popcorn & Ice Cream Company, Amana 

Wedged between the stores of the Amana Colonies is the Popcorn and Ice Cream Company. It’s the only place in the town of Amana to order ice cream. “If you don’t like one [flavor] we have others you’re bound to like,” said Skylar Ossian, manager. Next to the 10 flavors of ice cream brought in from Wisconsin are 57 flavors of popcorn made in house. Visitors can taste test almost anything they want in the store. “We want to make [customers] feel comfortable to make them have the best experience they can with us,” Ossian said.

July 14: Ghurties Gourmet Frozon Yoghurt, Coralville 

David Munson and his family opened Ghurties six years ago in Coralville. They partnered with a company that has been making yogurt for 30 years. As a “Ma and Pop” store, as described by Munson, they built a lot of the store with family and friends’ help. “The biggest thing we wanted to do is create a community gathering place,” Munson said. They have grounded roots in the community by being a place for fundraisers to take place and events such a birthday parties.

July 15: Whitey's Ice Cream, Coralville

If you order a malt or shake from Whitey’s Ice Cream in Coral Ridge Mall, it will be so thick, it won’t fall out if you tip it over. The 1950’s styled ice cream shop is wedged in the food court. Mallory Petersen, manager, who has worked at Whitey’s for four and a half years and she loves the community aspects. “I love the people. The employees are like family here,” Petersen said.