July is National Ice Cream Month…and here in Michigan, its big business! Hundreds of shops and parlors operate around the state, scooping up sweet treats to cool you off on those hot summer days! Did you know that Michigan ranks #5 in the nation for ice cream production? That’s a fact worth celebrating – each and every day this month!
Earlier this summer, Travel Michigan partnered with Hudsonville Ice Cream for their second annual search for a Pure Michigan flavor. Overall, 7000 entries were submitted and the winning flavor (to be produced and available in stores by October) is Pure Michigan Double Berry Pie – vanilla ice cream with swirls of blueberries and strawberries, surrounded by pieces of pie crust! The flavor was unveiled in June at a Detroit Tigers game at Comerica Park.
Now…speaking of the Tigers…Michigan McDonald’s are this summer offering up a McFlurry flavor featuring our Major League team! The swirly treat is made with orange and navy blue M&M-esque candies, adored with the Olde English D.
As you make plans to celebrate National Ice Cream Month, here are some great parlors worth the drive…
Calder’s Dairy Store & Ice Cream Parlor – Lincoln Park
Serving up family traditions since 1946, this fresh-from-the-farm experience features more than 30 flavors including Bloo Moo and Fudge Swirl. Voted Downriver’s Best Ice Cream.
Capitol City Scoop – Lansing
New this summer, just one block from the Lugnuts field and a short distance from the legislative offices. Proudly serving MSU Dairy ice cream!
Cornwell’s Turkeyville USA – Marshall
Visitors will find more than just turkey and dinner theater, a variety of gobbler-inspired ice cream treats are available including the Turkeyville Twister, the Wishbone Sundae and the Supertom Banana Split.
Country Dairy – New Era
Featured flavors include Peanut ‘Udder Chaos – chocolate ice cream with a peanut butter swirl, Hoofprints – caramel ice cream with caramel cups and a caramel swirl, Michigan Black Cherry and Strawberry Patch.
Dean’s Ice Cream – Plainwell
This shop has started as the Riverside Creamery in 1916 today is home of dozens of hand-dipped flavors for cones, sundaes, splits and shakes – including the famed Monster Malt.
Farmhouse Coffee and Ice Cream – Franklin
Located in a renovated farmhouse in the middle of Franklin Village, you’re invited to relax on the wrap-around porch while indulging on one of more than 30 flavors of ice cream and frozen yogurt like Mackinac Island Fudge and Grandpa’s Blueberry Way.
The Front Porch – Spring Lake
A great place to enjoy great service, a great family atmosphere and even better homemade ice cream. You’ll even find gluten free cones!
Grindstone General Store – Grindstone City (minutes from Port Austin)
The last operating business from the original city, established in 1890. The Ice Cream Parlor serves up 24 flavors of Strohs hand-dipped ice cream, with the largest cones in the Thumb area.
Guernsey Farms Dairy Ice Cream Parlor – Northville
Try a scoop of one this family-run spot’s one-of-a-kind, Michigan-made 48 flavors. Pick from cones, shakes, banana splits, hot fudge sundaes, brownie fudge treats, hot fudge cream puffs and more.
House of Flavors – Ludington & Manistee
Can’t decide from one of the dozens of flavors? The “Park Dairy Sampler” provides five different scoops. Hungry? Try the “Original Pig’s Dinner” – with vanilla, chocolate, strawberry and orange pineapple ice creams served on a banana in a pig’s trough smothered with pineapple, wild cherry, strawberry and chocolate toppings.
Jersey Junction – East Grand Rapids
Established in 1963 by Doris VanAllsburg (mother of Chris VanAllsburg, author of The Polar Express), this old-fashioned parlor serves nearly flavors of locally-made Hudsonville ice cream in cups, cones and waffle bowls.
Jones – Baldwin
A local institution since 1942, with sugar free and fat free flavors, chocolate-dipped waffle cones and more.
Marion’s Dairy Bar – East Tawas
Generations have made this part of their summer vacation plans, since 1945. Grab an ice cream cone, then take a leisurely walk along the Lake Huron Shoreline at the East Tawas State Dock.
MOOmers – Traverse City
Voted “America’s Best Scoop” on ABC’s Good Morning America in 2008, Cherries Moo-Bilee and Choc-O-Holic are among more than 120 different flavors of homemade ice cream available throughout the year (with over 20 available daily). Also served up every afternoon on the Traverse Tall Ship Manitou.
Moo-ville – Nashville
With a repertoire of more than 80 flavors, a visit offers old-fashioned down-on-the-farm fun. Voted Michigan’s Best Ice Cream Parlor (2012) by John “Gonzo” Gonzalez and Mlive.com.
MSU Dairy – East Lansing
More than 40 flavors celebrate collegiate life, including Final Four Fudge Dribble – vanilla ice cream with an amazing thick fudge ribbon and chocolate-covered malted milk balls, in honor of the Spartan Basketball team; Sesquicentennial Swirl – white cake batter ice cream with a thick green fudge swirl, surrounded by green and white cake pieces; and Dantonio’s Double Fudge Fake – chocolate fudge ice cream with a caramel ribbon, milk chocolate caramel-filled footballs and chewy brownies, in honor of Spartan Football Coach Mark Dantonio.
Oink’s – New Buffalo
Offering not only a feast for the belly – with dozens of flavors or ice cream and frozen yogurt – but also a feast for the eyes with countless ice cream scoops, milk shake blenders, ice cream freezers, and – you guessed it – pigs, on display.
Plainwell Ice Cream – Plainwell
One of two well-known shops in this small Allegan County town, serving up creamy flavors like Island City Fudge and French Silk. Featured in the 2013 Pure Michigan Travel Ideas.
Roaring 20’s – Flushing
Rated one of Michigan’s top 29 ice cream stores – serving more than 40 flavors of hand-dipped ice cream from the Michigan-based Ashby’s in Sterling Heights.
Scream’s – Hell
Super-premium ice cream from hell, where you can build your own sundae with gourmet toppings in this devilish parlor.
Sherman’s Ice Cream – South Haven
A highlight of this lakeshore community since 1916, with unique flavors like Carrot Cake, Chocolate Covered Pretzel and Red Velvet Delight. The “Spaghetti Sundae” is made with vanilla ice cream noodles, chocolate balls and strawberry sauce, with white chocolate flakes.
Did you know…Wayland-based Denali Flavors is the creative force behind some of the most successful ice creams sold in the United States today – including MOOSE TRACKS! This brand has grown through the past decade to include eight flavor varieties – Original Moose Tracks®, Chocolate Moose Tracks®, Cherry Moose Tracks®, Original No-Sugar-Added Moose Tracks®, Extreme Moose Tracks®, Mint Moose Tracks®, Mocha Moose Tracks®, and Malted Moose Tracks® – and a broad line of novelty ice cream products, including cones, ice cream bars and ice cream pies.
Something fun for the adults – try pouring your favorite Michigan porter or stout craft beer over ice cream for a BEER FLOAT! Vanilla works, as would flavors like fudge swirl or malted milk balls. The malty-characters of the darker beers compliment the maltiness of the ice cream for an ubber tasty treat! Cheers…