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6/13/11

Musings about Idaho and Snowcones

That's right, snowcones.  This was a decent weekend, and I think it's finally safe to say that it's warm-season in Idaho.  Maybe not quite summer, but warm enough to bask in the sunlight.

One thing I love about the summer season is the wide selection of sweets and treats to cool you down.  My favorite growing up was a sweet, sticky snow cone.  They were fun to make, but you would only see a snowcone stand once in a blue moon.

Well, in Idaho, snowcone stands are EVERYWHERE.  And I love it.  Sorry California, this is one advantage-point to Idaho.  (But don't worry, you're still winning the overall game by about 164 to 3.)

The stands are practically on every corner.  They are to Idaho Falls what a Starbucks is to, well, almost anywhere else.  On a warm Saturday afternoon, there is usually a good-sized crowd of people gathered around these fine establishments.

Stands vary in size, appearance, and variety.  There are stands with dozens of different varieties, and five sizes to choose from.  Others only offer 10 selections and two sizes.  Like snowflakes, no two stands are alike.  Which just adds to the charm.


What's amusing is the fact these stands are up year-round.  They're usually only open from May until September, but they're tempting and teasing you for all 12 months.  These small, rickety buildings look small enough to move (most are like 6x6 feet...) but there they are, permanent fixtures.

In my opinion, these things are widely popular for two reasons:

1 - There are no 7-Elevens in town, so Slurpees, Icees and the like are in short supply.  There are only one or two gas stations that offer these, and it may be because the snowies have the market cornered.

2 - I'm all about small businesses, and so is Idaho.  These are independent shops run by locals.  When you spend your money at a local shop instead of a mass-market, it always makes you smile a little.

I haven't had my first snowcone of the season yet, but it will happen soon.  I haven't had a snowcone in ages, and am looking forward to trying as many flavors as I can before the weather starts to cool again.  That, and the sticky blue fingers, of course.
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41 witty retorts:

Braden said...

Man I can't remember the last time I had a snowcone! They are so delicious and sugary, I may have to try to make some here.

The Angry Lurker said...

Would love to try one.

Jewels said...

I honestly can't remember the last time I had a snowcone but if I had cute little places like that to get them at, and not circus' and Disney on Ice, I might change my mind about them. We have a Rita's Water Ice every time you turn a corner but no snowcones. Love those harbingers of summer though...the cold treat places open, the ice cream truck starts making its way through side streets, and it just feels right. :)

Mynx said...

I m not really sure what a snow cone is. Is it a type of iceceam or a not so slushie slushie. We dont have them here

Neon said...

I would kill for a snowcone stands around every corner, it's so hot here!

Lemons Don't Make Lemonade said...

It's about a 100 degrees over here so...snow cones? YES PLEASE.

Even though I have no bloody idea where to get them.

HATE THE WEATHER.

Drake Sigar said...

If you get to the stage where you turn around and spot a snow cone stand in a space which was completely empty only seconds ago, call me.

Dwija {House Unseen} said...

I love those stands! So freaking cute.

Yeah, the mom and pop ice cream shops are totally charming around here. No Cold Stone in sight and I like it!

Al Penwasser said...

We don't have an abundance of snowcone stands in Pennsylvania. What we do have are Water Ice establishments (pronounced by the locals as "Wooder Ice"). While water ice is little more than a melted snowcone, it's actually pretty good. Except they can give you a wicked brain freeze. And anything with Nutra-Sweet in it gives me a 24 hour case of the crap attacks.

Zombie said...

I love snow cones! :D

Random Girl said...

We marked the beginning of summer by when the snow cone hut opened down the street. All winter we drove by it and my princess would say "when it gets summer, we are going THERE for snowcones everyday!" We don't go everyday much to her disappointment but once a week is a definite. Love me some snowcones!

bmx4130 said...

I haven't had a snowcone in a long time. Makes me want one.

Rob said...

Neither have I, some time soon though now I've read this

Xenototh said...

Snow cones.. all we get in Indiana is corn. <.<

Bart said...

those booth creep me out for some odd reason.

Shutterbug said...

I'm not too crazy about them snow cones. I prefer frozen yogurt or ice ice cream! Are there lots of ice places in Idaho?

The Minute Man's Wife said...

I'm with Bart! I can't help but wonder if there are little Snow Cone creatures breeding in there all winter? I half expect to see an oompa-loompa coming running out of there!!

Adsila said...

I love snowcones! They remind me of summer little league games. I would get one at every game. I love the colored lips and tongue they would leave after you finished slurping them down.

Lady Estrogen said...

I find the slurpee is the far superior product, but if a snow cone is what's avails, then it's awesome. There's a fine art to maintaining the flavor-to-ice ratio going - it's all about pacing yourself. I find this challenging since I don't normally suffer from brain freeze. lol

Asty said...

snocones are great :b

Melanie said...

That is awesome. Usually the only time you see an actual sno-cone stand is at a summer carnival - we have all of the slurpees, freezies and icees around here, but there is something different about a sno-cone! Even at summer carnivals they are not always there, so finding a stand is a special day!! Enjoy it when you get one!

AllenTesch said...

I guess every state has it's own unique popular confection.

Heather said...

mmmm, makes me wanna buy a snow-cone machine from Walmart lol

duffboi said...

I can't even remember the last time I had a snow cone. Wow

Astronomy Pirate said...

I haven't had one in a couple years, which makes me kind of want one now. My least favorite part is when you hit plain ice though, because the juice just seeped down to the bottom. The bottom being the most awesomely delicious portion.

Bunny Hill said...

Looking at those snowcones color, I was wondering if idaho is radioactive.

But I still eat that

Autumnforest said...

Yes, definitely eat the blue. There's nothing more adorable than a grown man with blue lips and teeth grinning like a kid.

Heather (aka Sugar Free) said...

I have yet to see a snow cone stand here in Seattle. But we do have a shit ton of "Bubble Tea" places. And no, I don't know what the hell it is. I do remember loving my Snoopy Snow Cone maker when I was a kid. I wonder if they still make those....

Kicking Rocks said...

i love shaved ice! I love mixing the flavours orange and lemon lime =D

ExoticBlogger said...

yum!

A Beer for the Shower said...

I am so envious of your snowcones. I live in Colorado, aka mountains upon mountains of snow, and yet... I couldn't tell you a single place to find a snowcone. How's that for some crap?

D4 said...

I think I'm gonna have one tomorrow :)

kitkat said...

i love that you're "warming" up to idaho

The Empress said...

Yummo! Now I'm craving hawaiian shave ice. I think someone should offer snow cones for adults. A couple of shots of vodka added to your favorite flavor should do the trick quite nicely!

Rob said...

Snow cones are awesome :D

Skankin_Pete said...

Love ices, we've got alot of the stands around me too =)

tarzanman151 said...

I love Ices, they're like summer incarnate

Ally said...

For some reason this post reminds me of how the other day, I asked my husband what the deal was with the gazillion ice cream shops down here by the beach. One after another???? Ironically there is one SNOWCONE place in this sea of ice cream joints. Honestly, I have NEVER one in my life other than the packaged snowcones you get from the ice cream truck or made at home with a Snoopy Snowcone machine. I wonder if the owner is from Idaho. I'm dragging my husband there asap and asking the owners. FL is so foreign to me in that it's oddly like Manhattan, more transients than I've ever seen in one place in my entire life. Like tons of these Chicago hot dog places and Philly Cheese Steak joints. Like the on-going theme is peeps bringing their city to the beach down here in FL.

PS Every time I visit your blog, I think of this Built to Spill song, Twin Falls, Idaho. Not sure if you're a fan.... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YKin1UPQWXU

On My Soapbox said...

Yum, snocones! Never eat one while you're wearing a white shirt, though. No matter how careful you are, some will get on your shirt.

Thank, Q said...

We have one snow cone stand in the area and there's always a line for it. I haven't tried this location yet, but it must be good.

snow cone machine said...

As someone who lives and breathes snow cones I can confirm you are absolutely right about no two stands looking alike! That's the creativity and spirit of the snow cone machine business people. You have to love it!

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