Sweet Recipe for Happiness: Big Bell Ice Cream

By Diane McNitt , Rosati Ice Brand Ambassador

Posted July 24th, 2020

“Happiness is just an ice cream truck away” is the slogan on our great friends and distributor’s web site – Big Bell Ice Cream in Minneapolis, MN. CEO (Chief Eating Officer, get it?) James Freid and his wife Karen offer ice cream truck catering and special event services throughout the Twin Cities, and they couldn’t be happier.

Big Bell Ice Cream has that right – happiness IS buying a refreshing treat from an ice cream truck, especially when the heat and humidity crank up. And, especially now, with folks working from home and parents home with their young children.  Who doesn’t have fond memories of eagerly waiting in line and tiptoeing to see all of the colorful cool stickers on the trucks and deciding which one to choose?

I’ve gotta admit, to this day I still can’t decide.

In addressing the current situation, James claims, “Ice cream trucks lend themselves to social distancing. Customers spread out while waiting in line. We held off an extra month getting our trucks out so we could train our drivers and enable customers to get accustomed to the new routine of social distancing.”

James fondly recalls when he met Rich Trotter, President, Rosati Ice, with his wife Debbie and his young daughter at the Ice Cream Convention. “Rich is THE nicest guy I wanted to buy from, but never did.”

Lo and behold, eight years ago, he started buying from Rosati Ice and “it’s been wonderful ever since.”

Starting early in the family in the business .

“Rosati Ice’s large appeal is that it’s refreshing (we hear that all the time!) and Rosati Ice quenches your thirst. The cups are easy to eat from and carry around. Rosati Ice is scoopable!”  (That’s the Rosati ice pledge!)

When looking for a dairy-free frozen dessert made in a nut-free facility, the Freids were pleased to add Rosati Italian Ice especially “for kids that can’t have ice cream. We didn’t want them to be left out,” says Karen. There’s Rosati for them. We have eight flavors on all of our trucks. Rosati ice is selling well, especially the Cry Baby ice and rosy ‘moji ice.”

It’s not only about the product, but the promotion that creates happiness. “Point-of-sale is everything,” admits James. Rosati Ice’s decals display the cups nicely, they make the product look good, and they draw people in.” What more could you ask for?

“POS is everything!”

While business has slowed down drastically due to COVID 19 and they’ve had problems hiring drivers, James and Karen have kept their sense of humor and reminisce about busier times. Leading up to last year’s July 4th, they worked nonstop till 2AM (that’s not a typo) Well, not this year. This spring, they missed having their trucks on college campuses during finals week. “The students would take a break, come out and buy a frozen novelty. Nope, not this year.

Challenges may continue, but Big Bell Ice Cream and Rosati Ice will forge ahead to bring happiness to folks with ice cream, novelties, and Rosati Italian ice.

Big Bell Ice Cream

3218 Snelling Avenue

Minneapolis, MN 55406


Facebook: @bigbellicecream

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About Rosati Ice

Rosati Ice, based in Clifton Heights, PA, is the oldest Italian Water Ice manufacturer in America.