I got so excited coming home today! As I hit the square, Coffee N Cream had a sign up for FREE ice cream. That’s enough for most anyone to get excited but Rick’s Chophouse has also started valet service on the square. The signs were right next to each other and I had to digest the concept of free ice cream and the fact that I needed to be in the correct lane at the same time. There seemed to me to be tons of people on the square and one young couple was dressed up as if on their way to prom or homecoming, so I thought that there must be a special event on the square tonight.Somehow, to me, the combination of all of the above means that the warm weather season has finally really started.
I rounded the corner of the courthouse (MPAC) and the new place, And The Party Never Ends, is open!! There doors were open and shoppers were going in. It was about 5:40 so I hurried home so that I could come back down on foot. By 5:45, I had on my tennis shoes and was out the door. My husband barely had time to tell me to take the checkbook and stop by Hamm’s Custom Meats for a couple of steaks if they were still open when I got there.
I made a bee-line for the free ice cream. Sure enough, they really were giving out free ice cream, no strings attached. I asked the clerk about the promotion and she said that they just wanted to make sure people knew that they were the only ice cream place on the square and that they serve Blue Bell. I had to smile. I have called the new gelato place an ice cream parlor several times because I didn’t know what gelato was. I still don’t really know what, technically, gelato is. It’s not ice cream. I understand that.
In the spirit of scientific discovery (without bothering with actual facts, definitions or boring details), I walked around the corner to Paciugo Gelato. I had seen their door open on Monday when I had been on the square with friends for lunch. I had assumed that they were open and we didn’t go in, having had dessert already at Churchill’s British Pub. I read in the Courier Gazette this week that Monday and Tuesday were technically a kind of preview. They were handing out free samples on those days and the actual “opening” was on Wednesday. Oops.
There is a wide variety of flavors – Viola, Pistachio Almond, Monkey Business, Rocky Road, Tiramasu, Amaretto Chocolate Chip, Wedding Cake and Peanut Butter Cookies & Milk, just to name a few. The Pistachio looked pretty popular as it was almost gone. The group in front of me were getting Wedding Cake. I chose the Amaretto Chocoate Chip. It’s good. It’s like ice cream. But it’s not. It seems colder, if that is possible. The young men behind the counter were great – all smiles and a really fun vibe. They said that they’d be open until 11 pm! Wow! Now, if we can get the shops to stay open a little later into the evening, we’ll have it made. 🙂
Juiced up on ice cream and gelato, I made it over to check out And The Party Never Ends. Boy, I’m sorry, but did I have wrong info on what that place was going to be! I had heard that it was going to be a florist specializing in weddings so that is what I reported here in past posts. They have a few flower cases but they said that they are going to be a cash-and-carry place as far flowers go. They are packed with tons of neat stuff like this Apple Tini mix I got for only $8! They have a couple of beautiful marionettes. I was too shy to ask them if I could take a shot of them. Maybe next time. The three vaults in the back are photo-worthy too. One is for storage it looks like, the middle one has been converted into dressing rooms (yes! they have clothes) and the third is an office. They have some frilly, feminine little dresses, lots of decorative glasses, wine accessories and trinkets. One of the wine accessories, a coiled metal wine holder for holding your wine up off of the ground when outside, was only $8 as well.
The ladies are all very nice and excited about being open. There is nothing to compare with shopping in places like this where you are talking to an owner who loves being in business. We are planning an excursion down to Allen Premium Outlets tomorrow, but I already know it will be a different experience. Nothing against the outlets, but it’s just not the same.
I did swing by Hamm’s after checking out And The Party Never Ends but they had closed at 5 PM so there’s no steaks tonight unless we make a late trip to Market Street. 😦 I made my way back up to the square but most of the shops were closed. I headed on back home and still enjoyed my walk. They’ll be open tomorrow. 🙂
Until next time,