Vail Valley Bizwatch: The Ice Cream Lady and her big truck
Vail, CO, Colorado
Business name: Everyone has come to know me as “The Ice Cream Lady” even though the original name of the business was Sweet Serendipity. I decided to change it because Sweet Serendipity does not exactly roll off the tongue.
Date opened: Memorial Day Weekend, 2000.
Owner: Carrie Foster-Zovluck.
Phone: 970 470 2691 or 970 926 5503
What goods or services do you provide? I own and operate the Vail Valley’s first ice-cream truck! I sell all the classics and favorites including but not limited to Drumsticks, Eskimo Pies, strawberry shortcakes, chocolate eclairs, pushups, fruit bars, iItzakadoozies (practice saying that kids!), ice-cream sandwiches and, of course, Bomb Pops. I also have a great selection of candy, snacks and soft drinks on board. The service I provide is unique and nostalgic. Whatever the occasion, a visit from the ice-cream truck is sure to make it memorable.
I am available for birthdays, block parties, office parties, school events, weddings, soccer or lacrosse team parties and Fourth of July gatherings (call early!). I especially love community events ” please think of me if you are planning an event in your community.
What strategy do you use to differentiate your business from your competition? I am very lucky, so far, in that I have not had too much in the way of competition. So far I am the only ice cream truck in the Valley. Being a family-run mobile business also keeps costs down. What makes The ice cream truck special is the nostalgia and novelty that come with it.
What philosophy do you follow in dealing with your customers? What can your customers expect from you? My philosophy is that ice cream makes everything better in many ways. The term “economic downturn” is heard repeatedly and is synonymous with feeling broke. Well, an ice cream is only a couple of bucks, has been known to cause a social upturn and brings smiles to our faces.
My customers can always expect cheery and polite service. Both my son, Jordan ,and daughter Kelsey work with me. They have grown up with the ice cream truck and now they are getting the opportunity to learn the business.
I want to give back to the community, too ” I have been involved with many fund-raisers for locals in need and often donate ice cream parties for silent auctions. Please contact me if you have a fund-raiser I can help with.
Being a part of children’s lives is wonderful. Little kids have grown up seeing “The Ice Cream Lady” every year.
Tell us a little about your background, education and experience: My background is very colorful. l I grew up in an Indian neighborhood in London with my Indian dad and Scottish mother. I lived in London and Bristol for my formative years and came to the U.S. in my late 20s. Since coming to the Vail Valley I have focused mainly on the food and beverage industry. I have had the pleasure of working in many wonderful restaurants, most recently as banquet manager for Grouse Mountain Grill.
After each long winter it is always wonderful to get the truck out and become “The Ice Cream Lady” again.
What is the most humorous thing that has happened at your business since you opened? When I first started out I would do just about anything to get the ice cream truck out and about. I had a request to host a kid’s party with the truck, but dressed as a clown. Never having been a clown before but having a natural affinity for silly behavior I got all dressed up in blue wig and awesome clown clothes and makeup.
Embarrassment was not an issue until I was at the Edwards traffic lights, front and center with blue hair and a big red nose, very conspicuous in a bright truck. Those lights could not change fast enough!
Snowplowing efforts are a prime example of how sometimes the very people who need a service hinder its delivery.