By Chad Clem
A new business is opening in town that "takes eating ice cream seriously," according to its slogan.
Uncle Bill's Ice Cream Stand, located 1300 North Randolph Ave., is a family-oriented ice cream parlor that's preparing to start serving the community today at its grand opening, which will feature music, kid-friendly activities and free popcorn.
Owners Tammy and Jerry Lipscomb came up with the idea for the business after being inspired by the aspirations of Tammy's father, Bill Stone, for whom the restaurant is named.
"He always wanted to open an ice cream place," she said. "He enjoyed people, especially kids, and this is a way for us to honor him and help serve the community as well."
Located on the Allegheny Highlands Trail, the shop offers many varieties of old-fashioned ice cream from classics like vanilla and chocolate to fruitier flavors, such as black raspberry soft-serve. Uncle Bill also scoops out specials featuring candy bar and cookie flavors and a Gut Buster, which is a customer's choice of either a 32-ounce milkshake or a 32-ounce sundae with up to five toppings.
Uncle Bill's other menu items include chili dogs and beverages like soda, water and Gatorade.
"We want to offer big portions at low prices," Tammy Lipscomb said. "We have real ice cream, none of that low-fat stuff. We want to give you your money's worth."
The Lipscombs share a location with Bennett's Market, operated by Lynda and Ron Bennett. The market sells freshly picked, locally grown produce such as tomatoes, cantaloupe, watermelon, corn, cabbage, peppers, potatoes, peaches and 18 varieties of apples, as well as canning supplies. The produce comes from six to eight different growers across the state, from Parkersburg to the Eastern Panhandle. The market also works with the Farm-to-School program in six school districts to help provide healthy meals, promote healthy lifestyles and mutually benefit the schools and farms it serves.
The Bennetts and the Lipscombs invite the community to come and check out their new location and continue to support local businesses in the area.