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Ice cream lovers don’t have to hibernate during the winter now that Frosty Bear is open just a mile or so south of the Newtown–Monroe border on Route 25.
For five years, John Martin operated a very successful seasonal ice cream stand near Staples High School in Westport. But a couple of years ago he decided to begin looking for a location where he could remain open year-round, especially for those with a sweet tooth and no reservations about enjoying a cone or sundae during the coldest days of winter.
He found that spot in a space previously occupied by a small Italian eatery, tucked between Creative Music and a Dunkin’ Donuts shop. Mr Martin opened his doors in Monroe just as a heat wave descended on the region in mid-July, and he is seeing a steady stream of fair weather customers returning and expressing gratitude that they can continue to get their ice cream fix.
The shop is also welcoming new customers looking for interesting desserts to accompany their holiday meals, office parties, and other activities. For them he offers ice cream cakes, and ice cream pies with delectable names like Brownie Pizza, Peppermint Stick, and Oreo Bomb.
“We want people to know we are here for them year-round,” he said during a recent visit to the bright and cheerful store, adorned with pictures and images of his chosen mascot, Frosty the Polar Bear.
If you like frosty milk shakes, Mr Martin will tempt you with his inventive winter “hot shakes,” complete with a peppermint swizzle stick. Try the yummy Polar Express, Blue Christmas, or Eggnog flavor among his warm offerings.
Every day the shop procures at least 30 flavors of premium ice cream, sorbet, and frozen yogurt from Longford’s in neighboring Port Chester, N.Y. Get a scoop or two served in a homemade waffle cone, sitting atop a brownie or gingerbread waffle, or tucked into a crunchy Rice Crispy bowl.
Or sample a seasonal Pumpkin Shake or refreshing Pineapple Polar Whip with fresh pineapple juice, lemon sorbet, vanilla ice cream, fresh whipped cream. and a cherry to top it off.
In a rush? Pop in for a hand-packed quart to enjoy at home.
Mr Martin said he has been quietly cultivating the Frosty Bear brand, which he owns. And while the shop is not a franchise operation, many visitors believe it is with its retro furnishings and welcoming layout.
The shop is available for private ice cream parties of 15 to 20, and he sells books of gift certificates good for cub cones. When purchased in a ten-pack for stocking stuffers, classroom gifts, party favors, or a treat to reward good behavior, the certificates are less than $1 each.
With single full-size cones starting at $3.25, Mr Martin believes he is very competitive with other ice cream shops whose owners close or head south for the winter. He also hosts fundraisers, with his first supporting the post 12/14 effort to support an expanded child’s playground and programs through Newtown Parks & Recreation Department.
And he is motivated to speak with anyone tied to a charity, civic group, school, or other entity looking to partner with him on new fundraising ideas.
Want to get Frosty Bear promotional deals? Just text “frostybear” to 411247 on any cellphone and receive new offers regularly. Or just keep tabs on what’s happening at Frosty Bear’s FaceBook page or website: frostybearicecream.com.
The shop, at 695 Main Street, Monroe, is open seven days a week — Sunday through Thursday from noon to 8 pm; Fridays from noon to 9 pm; and Saturdays from noon to 10 pm. Call 203-590-3311 for information, to place orders, or to reserve the shop for parties.