Nearly all hands were on deck at Flanigan’s Ice Cream on Barnwell Avenue in Aiken on Sunday.
It was National Ice Cream Day, and the owners of Flanigan’s, Jay and Renee Markiewicz, were expecting business to be much brisker than usual.
Single dips of the frozen sweet treat were being sold for a reduced price.
“People have been steadily coming in, and almost our whole staff is here,” said Renee a little after 1 p.m. “We usually have two people a shift on Sundays, but there are seven or eight employees here right now. My husband and I also are working.”
In addition, Renee continued, “we are doing an offsite event at the Aiken County Historical Museum today. They are having an ice cream social.”
After eating lunch at Diablo’s, Will Williams came to Flanigan’s with his wife, Ellen, and one of their two sons, Jacob.
“Luke left today to go on a mission trip to Florida with ‘First Pres’ (First Presbyterian Church),” said Will, who is the president and CEO of the Economic Development Partnership of Aiken, Edgefield, McCormick and Saluda counties.
Will ate Milky Way ice cream, and Ellen and Jacob had Key Lime Pie.
“There are no bad flavors, but I love Key Lime,” Jacob said.
The Williams were at Flanigan’s specifically for National Ice Cream Day, but “we come here at other times,” Ellen said.
Those occasions include Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, Will added.
“We enjoy the vegetables that this Earth creates like ice cream,” he joked. “Ice cream is good for you, right?”
Also enjoying National Ice Cream Day at Flanigan’s was Ashley Curtis of Augusta. She brought her 1 and 1/2-year-old son, Rhett, with her, and her sister, Marissa Lewis joined them.
“We thought we would celebrate with a lunch date and an ice cream date,” Ashley said. “He (Rhett) woke up from a nap just to eat his ice cream.”
In 1984, President Ronald Reagan signed a proclamation designating July as National Ice Cream Month and the third Sunday in July as National Ice Cream Day.
The proclamation described ice cream as a “nutritious and wholesome food” with a “reputation as the perfect dessert and snack food.”