We have Ronald Reagan to thank for National Ice Cream Day. In 1984 the president signed a proclamation (an actual proclamation, you guys), calling ice cream a “nutritious and wholesome food” and declaring July National Ice Cream Month and the third Sunday of July National Ice Cream Day. This year it falls on Sunday, and shops all over Los Angeles are commemorating this actual national day of recognition with discounts, free giveaways, and never-before tasted flavors.
“I call upon the people of the United States to observe these events with appropriate ceremonies and activities,” Reagan wrote.
We will, Mr. President.
Salt & Straw (multiple locations)
Salt & Straw is the homecoming queen of ice cream in LA. But like the kind of homecoming queen who’s friends with the cheerleaders but also really nice to the drama club kids. In honor of National Ice Cream Day, Salt & Straw will be giving away a different special treat or souvenir (non-edible – sorry) to one lucky, randomly selected winner every hour at each of its five shops. Prizes include ice cream scoops, pints, scoopers, T-shirts, and hats. It’s also offering a selection of limited-edition flavors, including Meyer Lemon Buttermilk with Blueberries, and Strawberry Cilantro Lime Cheesecake.
Magpies Soft Serve (multiple locations)
This gem of an artisanal soft serve shop, with two locations (Silver Lake and Tarzana) fashions itself as a “chef-y Dairy Queen.” It makes everything from scratch, and it rotates flavors every few weeks. For National Ice Cream Day it will roll out brand new flavors it has never had in the shop before – Cotton Candy, Black Cherry, Dark Mint Chocolate, and Brown Bread. It will also have Orange Creamsicle, and its usuals: Malted Milk Chocolate, Sweet Cream, and Corn Almond. Lots of these flavors are vegan, too.
THE OLD-SCHOOL CLASSIC
Baskin-Robbins (multiple locations)
Baskin-Robbins is starting the party early, this Friday, July 14, offering free samples of Polar Pizza at all locations between noon and 5 PM. For those not in the know, Polar Pizza involves a double fudge brownie crust and mint chocolate chip ice cream topped with Oreo cookie pieces. I think there are also marshmallows involved. It’s a lot. Maybe have some protein beforehand.
CREAM (multiple locations)
— CREAM (@CREAMNATION) July 13, 2017
The menu here is stunning and even a little overwhelming, but in a good way. Ice cream sandwiches, fresh-baked cookies – even gluten-free and vegan ones – and over 20 premium ice cream flavors such as Birthday Cake, Caramel Cinnamon Chill, and Soy Mint Chocolate Chip. Yes, soy. On Sunday, CREAM will be offering 50 percent off on any scoop of ice-cream – including double and triple scoops.
FOR THE KIDS
Zimmer Children’s Museum (6505 Wilshire Blvd., #100)
Ice cream minus the sugar rush – bring the kids and spend your Sunday at the wonderful Zimmer Children’s museum where they’re opening up the art studio for a special ice cream-themed event. The artistically-inclined can paint, play and create what the museum is calling “silly ice cream art.” You’ll have to go to find out exactly what that means.