Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

It’s ice cream season in Minnesota April 7, 2014

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 6:00 AM
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Long lines formed to the two serving windows at Blast Softserve, 206 West Rose St., Owatonna.

Long lines form to the two serving windows at Blast Softserve, 206 West Rose St., Owatonna.

SUNDAY AFTERNOON AND THE LINES at Blast Softserve in Owatonna stretch sometimes 15 deep.

Lots of dogs waiting in line with their owners.

Lots of dogs waiting with their owners. Some of the canines got ice cream, too.

Families and couples and teens and dogs (yes, canines, too), all waiting for ice cream treats. No one complaining. No one seemingly in a hurry. Not even me, Ms. Impatience.

A peach pie flurry.

A peach pie flurry.

But after this Winter of Our Discontent—the winter that has blasted us with too much cold and too much snow—I am delighting in the 64-degree weather. No snow, although I order a peach pie flurry. Winter still on the brain, apparently.

Taking an order at the outdoor service window.

Taking an order at the outdoor service window.

I am still dressed in warm threads, too, a flannel shirt, while some here are baring their winter white arms and legs.

So many choices...including grasshopper treats.

So many choices…including grasshopper treats.

The mood is jovial. My husband jokes with a boy, about nine, that getting grasshoppers for a grasshopper treat may be difficult given they are out of season.

His father, quick with the wit, shoots back: “Maybe they bring them (the grasshoppers) in from South America.”

And they all laugh.

The building that houses the ice cream shop and a pizza place. Lots of loitering going on down the sidewalk and to the right at the walk-up ice cream window order area and  patio.

The building that houses the ice cream shop and Rose Street Pizzeria. Lots of loitering going on down the sidewalk to the right at the walk-up ice cream window order area and patio.

You can’t help but feel happy here at this hometown ice cream shop.

Lots of kids lining up for ice cream treats.

Lots of kids lining up for ice cream treats.

Sun and clouds. Kids and dogs. Shirt sleeves and shorts.

Kitschy ice cream art.

Kitschy signage.

Bikes parked in the bike rack. Stenciled letters. Kitschy art.

Just in case...

Just in case…

A bell to ring.

A blueberry sundae.

A blueberry sundae.

Dripping ice cream cones. A mother wiping chocolate ice cream from her son’s face. Temporary brain freeze.

Stenciled on the roof overhang above the serving windows.

Stenciled on the roof overhang above the serving windows.

Life is good on a Sunday afternoon in April in southern Minnesota.

© Copyright 2014 Audrey Kletscher Helbling

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20 Responses to “It’s ice cream season in Minnesota”

  1. hotlyspiced Says:

    I’m glad the weather is warming up but for me, I’d say it’s a little too soon to be breaking out the ice cream – I’d be still lining up for a hot chocolate. I do hope, that after this shocker of a winter, that you have a stifling hot and long summer xx

  2. Beth Ann Says:

    I think we all had those same feelings this weekend when the weather was so much warmer and nicer. We opted for a road trip on Saturday and a hiking trip on Sunday and it felt so good to get out!!! Yay spring! The ice cream looks delicious.

  3. Dan Traun Says:

    Mmmmm…ice cream or frozen yogurt. Very hard to pass up. I love hometown shops like this.

  4. It’s still a bit cold in Duluth…but when it warms up, I shall devour ICE CREAM!!!!! The photos are scrumptious.

  5. Nothing Better than a Warm, Sunny Day and an Ice Cream Treat:) Happy Monday – Happy Week!!!

  6. treadlemusic Says:

    Ahhhhh…..the signs of the pending season!!!!! Yay!!!!!!!!!!

  7. We have a popular local place, Ollie’s, that sells frozen custard. Everyone looks forward to its opening each spring. I haven’t stopped by yet, but seeing your yummy photos makes me think I’d better head over there soon.

  8. Jackie Says:

    Now you got me wanting ice cream…I think a trip to the dairy queen is in order tonight 🙂

  9. Emily B Says:

    YUM! Okay, definitely need to make that DQ run now. 🙂


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