NewsCovering Colorado


The Heat is Bringing More Business for two Local Ice Cream Shops

ice cream
Posted at 9:04 PM, Jul 18, 2023
and last updated 2023-07-18 23:04:44-04

COLORADO SPRINGS– BJ's Velvet Freez and Tasty Freeze are two local ice cream parlors in Colorado Springs. This July they are seeing a boom in business. Both shops say they are busier this month than in June.

Hannah Walters has been working at Bj's Velvet Freez for three summers. Walters said this summer is different.

“This summer, like the rain, it was definitely slower than before. Like previous summers it was busy all the time, all three months of the summer or whatever from when school got out to when it was back in session. So it's definitely a little bit different with the weather and stuff,” Walters said.

Walters said they noticed this June was slower than normal because of the wet weather. But because of the July sunshine, services are back to normal.

“Now that it's so hot, we're definitely seeing the customer flow,” Walters said.

The owners of Tasty Freeze, Anissa Hornsey and Kevin Bergsten said they had to close down for a few days in June also because of the weather. but with the change in weather, both businesses say now with the heat they are busy all the time.

"Just like masses of people coming, always busy all the time. After dinner, we get a big rush. During the day with people not being in school and stuff like that, there are just people everywhere all the time," Walters said.

To keep people cool, BJ's has a drive-through option. Tasty Freeze does not have a drive-through, but they did install water misters on their patio to help people cool off. They have shaded areas near trees and under umbrellas. Both businesses said June was a little slow because of the rain, but they have been making up for it in July.

Bill and Laura Schaffener have been eating ice cream at BJ’s Velvet Freez for 30 years.

“My wife always gets the blueberry sundae and I get the chocolate malt,” Schaffener said.

The Schaffener’s were craving ice cream on Tuesday and wanted to get their scoops before the crowd came.

“I was just hungry for it,” Laura Schaffener said. “It's hot, let's go get some ice cream before it gets too busy,” Bill Schaffener said.

Schaffener said the line for ice cream is sometimes so long it can go into the street.

Linda Grimaldo is a long-time Bj’s Velvet Freez customer. Grimaldo comes to BJ’s for a mixture of sweet vanilla and nostalgia. She was driving home from work on Tuesday when she stopped at BJ's for an ice cream.

“I said BJ’s, let me go have an ice cream, that was my son Jon Jon's favorite, this was his favorite ice cream,” Grimaldo said.

Grimaldo stops by BJ’s for an ice cream cone and a moment of remembrance of her son. Grimaldo said her son would always get a sundae.

“I'm just sitting here thinking about him, and trying to cool off in the shade because it is so hot out there,” Grimaldo said.

Grimaldo normally will come to BJ’s with her family, they all celebrated Fathers Day at BJ’s. She says on a hot day or a hard one, eating melting ice cream helps.

“Just enjoy, really enjoy, go outside, enjoy the weather because when the winter comes we will be crying,” Grimaldo said.

Sisters Emma and Mattie Stevens go to Tasty Freeze every summer and on Tuesday they brought their friend Piper DiFrancesco.

“It's been very warm, but we can handle it,” Emma Stevens said.

These three friends are on vacation in Colorado Springs and say stopping at a Tasty Freeze ice cream was a must-stop.

“We just went to In N Out and you can't get a burger and fries without coming to get an ice cream cone and we like the ice cream over here better than the ice cream at In N Out. So we thought, might as well we're on the way home. So let's just go to Tasty Freeze,” Emma Stevens said.

For them, a little shade and ice cream make the heat more tolerable.

“It's so nice, I just came back from Michigan, and it's a dry heat, yeah a dry heat, it's not like smoldering, it's not humid, I love it here,” Piper DiFrancesco said.

Tasty Freeze also expanded to a live music venue. They have concerts on Thursday nights. The owners say social media and having outdoor concerts have helped businesses.


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