There’s only one thing on earth that we love more than ice cream, and that’s you, our fans. So if you’re a veteran chunk-lover who has been downing pints for decades, or even just a rookie in the scoop game, we tip our hats and spoons to you.
Just for the record, we believe that all ice cream lovers are created equal. But occasionally we spot a rare and special breed of Ben & Jerry’s fan. These folks go to such amazing lengths to express their pint passion that even we can’t believe it, and their stories put a Cherry Garcia-hued blush on our cheeks.
Ladies and gentlemen, meet the Ben & Jerry’s Super Fans!:
* Kathy & Sheila *
South Bend, IN
What do you do when Free Cone Day is around the bend, but the nearest Ben & Jerry’s Scoop Shop is 90 miles away? Well if you’re like these Notre Dame alums, then you might decide to just hop on a bike and ride your way to cone heaven (a.k.a. Chicago). That’s what Kathy and Sheila have done for the past 4 years and counting! And they’ve even been joined on their pint pilgrimage by up to twenty friends from their local church.
Here’s how their journey came to pass. Sheila, a Free Cone Day devotee during her years on the east coast, arrived back in South Bend and realized that the nearest Scoop Shop was in Chicago. An adventurer at heart, she began having visions of cycling the whole way — 90 miles by car and even further when taking the bike-friendly roads that wind their way through Indiana corn country. Her new girlfriend at the time, Kathy, wasn’t totally convinced until she thought of the idea of driving a “sag wagon” for riders who might not make it the whole way. That sealed the deal, the inaugural ride was a go, and they set off for the Windy City.
Sure enough, the “sag wagon” proved indispensable as their first few attempts left them winded just shy of the city. Then last year, they pedaled the whole way only to find that their favorite Scoop Shop was closed! When we heard their story, we knew we had to do our best to make it up to them. So we recently rode with them to another great Chicago-area Scoop Shop and treated them to all the ice cream they could eat. After 90 miles of cycling, two trips through the line just wasn’t enough. Kathy & Sheila went back for thirds, and we suspect the “sag wagon” was full of happy nappers on the ride back to South Bend.
* Josh *
Los Angeles, CA
True love lasts forever, and so do tattoos! Josh is an L.A.-based stand-up comedian and snack food fanatic who also worked a part-time gig at his local tattoo parlor in West Hollywood. When he heard that the Ben & Jerry’s Core Tour was coming to town, he posted a tweet saying that he would get a Ben & Jerry’s tattoo if the Core Truck stopped by the parlor to give free scoops to his friends. We took him up on his offer and learned that when Josh makes a bet, it’s no laughing matter!
Sure enough, Josh asked one of his tattoo-artist pals to ink his left leg with a Ben & Jerry’s cone filled with three of his favorite scoops. The new tattoo is the centerpiece of a collection of snack food and video game references, or as Josh puts it: “My left leg is kind of a mish-mash of nonsense.”
We assumed that this might be the coolest and weirdest thing that Josh has ever done, but then he informed us that he once played a doctor in a sci-fi movie called “The Vessel” about two warring alien sub-cultures. So just in case the aliens try to steal his next pint, we thanked Josh with a year of free ice cream in return for his permanent expression of love for Ben & Jerry’s.
* The Bauer Family *
What’s your favorite flavor? If you work at Ben & Jerry’s, then you probably get this question every day. But if you’re anything like the Bauer Family, then you take this question very, very seriously.
When the Bauers moved from Denver to a town in upstate NY (with no Scoop Shop), they had to find a new way to get their Ben & Jerry’s fix. And they decided that the occasional pint just wasn’t enough –– they wanted to try them all. Their solution? They devised an annual taste test that includes every pint they can find in their area, and even incorporates math skills for the kids. The rules are simple. You get 1 scoop of every flavor, and water is the only option for palate cleansing. You score each flavor on a scale of 0 to 10, but you can only assign one ‘0’ and one ’10’. The scores for each flavor are tallied and averaged to declare a champion.
In the lead-up to the taste test, the family is known to pint-hunt for months, using the flavor locator at BenJerry.com and even checking every single gas station on their 90-minute drive to and from soccer practice.
This year, the Bauers had 46 flavors in their taste test (!) and after repeat victories for Cinnamon Buns, they invited extra friends to shake things up. They’ve incorporated a 5k run before the ice cream eating commences. And they plan to expand the taste test for their next family reunion, during which 50 people will take part and a new pint champion will be declared!