Americans Licked Winter

2012 is the second mildest winter on record.

To say this past winter was mild is a bit of an understatement. My warmest winter coat stayed on its hanger all season. The petunias I had last summer survived and are starting to bloom. And I swear I saw a mosquito hanging around in February.

Snow plowing businesses may have been cursing this past winter, but ice cream shops were singing its praises. The colder months are typically when parlor owners engage in quite a bit of thumb twiddling. This year, those thumbs were put to work ringing up sales.

Chris Jakubczak said his Kone King East in East Aurora, New York, had its best February in over a decade. Up the road a bit in Southwick, Massachusetts, the Summer House Restaurant was equally busy. Owner Rick Grimaldi says his sales have been like those around Memorial Day. Manager Shane Murphy of eCreamery Ice Cream and Gelato in Omaha, Nebraska, claims he was doing April numbers in February.

One Iowa ice cream shop has reaped big benefits from the mild winter.

The warm weather was especially good news for Fanci Freez in Boise, Idaho. For those familiar with Idaho winters, they usually don’t officially end until sometime in summer.

Recently, Boise experienced record high temperatures. That sent it citizens out in search of relief from the heat. Most of those good people must have come up with the same solution because a lot of them convened at Fanci Freez. As a line formed all the way into the parking lot, the shop’s workers did their best to dispense ice cream cones and Boston Shakes. According to those employees, that was the busiest day the store had experienced since its grand opening — in 1947.

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