Weather Updates

The scoop on heat and ice cream

John Lenz 6 Maple Park Ill.  attacks his strawberry ice cream cone during first day Kane County Fair St.

John Lenz, 6, of Maple Park, Ill. attacks his strawberry ice cream cone during the first day of the Kane County Fair in St. Charles,Earlier this month. (AP Photo/Daily Herald, Rick West)

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Updated: July 25, 2012 8:16PM

Too hot for ice cream?

Believe it or not, it can be, local purveyors say.

Denny Moore thinks he’s narrowed the ideal ice-cream selling temperature to within two degrees.

“Typically we’re best off when temperatures peak at 93, although this year that’s risen to 95 or 96,” he said, citing this summer’s extraordinary heat.

Any higher, Moore warns, and customers are unwilling to be outside.

Moore, co-owner of Scooter’s Frozen Custard, 1658 West Belmont, has been tracking temperatures for his business since 2003 to find a correlation between weather and sales.

Wendee Manderschied, co-owner of Tom & Wendee’s Italian Ice, 1136 W. Armitage, agrees with that philosophy.

“The heat helps, until it’s excessive,” she said.

High temperatures have also created a busy summer for Katina Harris, supervisor at Lickity Split Frozen Custard and Sweets, 6056 N. Broadway.

“If it gets too hot, we’ve got problems — not with a lack of customers, but with keeping enough people staffed to handle the long lines,” she said.

One expert, however, was skeptical that temperature plays much of a role at all.

“We’ve been really busy, regardless of the temperature,” said Charlotte Landers, in her 18th year as manager at Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream, 5337 W. Devon Ave. “If the sun comes out, people come out.”

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