Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

The sweet treat that marks the unofficial arrival of spring in my Minnesota community March 6, 2018

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 5:01 AM
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Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.


TWICE A YEAR, Randy and I treat ourselves to Peanut Buster Parfaits at the local Dairy Queen. In the fall when the smaller of the two DQs in Faribault closes for the winter and then again when it reopens for the season.





On the last Sunday of February, we headed to the ice cream chain for our $1.99 parfaits. The bargain price of more than half off the $4.59 list price was irresistible. I simply ignore the 710 calories.



As we pulled into the DQ parking lot, I suggested we sit outside at the concrete picnic tables, just to say we’d eaten our parfaits outside in Minnesota in February. Randy wasn’t falling for my suggestion. “There’s snow on the tables,” he said. Not everywhere, I observed to myself. But he was right. Consuming something cold while sitting on cold concrete, even if to prove a point, wasn’t the brightest idea.



The DQ sign showed a temperature of 30 degrees as we carried our treats outside and to the van.



Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.


I suggested we head to a park. Not to sit outdoors. But to pretend we could if only the temp was 20 degrees warmer. At a park near our home, we sat in the van and scooped sweet ice cream, salty peanuts and decadent chocolate into our mouths, savoring this first taste of spring in Faribault.


NOTE: To those of you in Minnesota, the Dakotas and Iowa, I know today seems nothing like spring.  I wrote this post and put it in draft prior to Monday’s major winter storm. Just pretend it’s spring. Or head to the DQ.


© Copyright 2018 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


26 Responses to “The sweet treat that marks the unofficial arrival of spring in my Minnesota community”

  1. I bet it doesn’t seem much like Spring with that storm that just blew through. I got homesick reading your post. Mmmmm one of my favorites! I think I have to get one when I migrate home to Minnesota in three weeks. Then paddle those 750 calories off right away!

    • I just shoveled off a bunch of calories before 7:30 this morning. We got about six inches of snow and now snow is falling again. Plus, the snowplow came by and plowed in the end of the driveway and the sidewalk. I texted the husband that I am not shoveling any more today. He’ll have to reopen everything when he gets home from work this evening. This is a wet, heavy snow, thus more challenging to remove.

      I’m happy to make former Minnesotans homesick. It means I’m doing my job as a writer and a photographer. 🙂

  2. Valerie Says:

    I like your tradition of visiting the DQ. I like their Pecan Clusters.

  3. chlost Says:

    The local DQ in the town where I work just reopened for the season, too. Just in time for the blizzard…..how apt!

  4. parkerozgood Says:

    I have been to that one a couple times! I like your tradition!

  5. Don Says:

    Like the postal motto says (not an official motto mind you) “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night”………… In my opinion a DQ treat always hits the spot!

  6. Don Says:

    Its a balmy 25 above here today and I did see some snow melt coming off the roof this morning! We too have much more snow than we need so much snow that many of the trees in my yard have broken limbs and my lilac bush which normally extends high above my house roof line is completely bent over and buried in snow. We both need to see some green!

    • Yes, green. I saw patches of lawn when I was in Redwood County on Saturday. That said, that area got 10 inches of snow yesterday into this morning. We received only six. My neighbor was on his roof this morning scooping off snow.

  7. Looks like fun to me! Yum!

  8. Jackie Says:

    We cannot hurry spring…even with the opening of the DQ. The 1st day of spring is March 20th, so really…winter still has the right to be here….Right??? P.S. I Love Peanut Buster Parfait’s, I dont think Rochester does that $1.99 sale. It’s probably best if I dont know 🙂

  9. Bella Says:

    I think spring is just around the corner when you make a trip to the DQ
    Remember spring never skips its turn!

  10. Neil Says:

    I can’t believe that your DQ opens for the season before ours does! We definitely would not have to clear any snow to sit at an outdoor table!

  11. Missy's Crafty Mess Says:

    Yum I haven’t had one in years

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