You can’t buy happiness, but you can always buy ice cream! And Aug. 18 is all about that sweet treat as Leopold’s Ice Cream hosts its 99th Birthday Block Party in downtown Savannah.
To commemorate the milestone, Leopold's will serve 99-cent scoops all day long. They will even host a photo contest where the top prize is free ice cream for a year.
“Along with celebrating our birthday, this is our thank you to the Savannah community for being our backbone,” said Carey Ferrara, Leopold's director of marketing and communications.
Leopold's Ice Cream was founded in Savannah in 1919 by brothers George, Peter and Basil Leopold. Immigrants from Greece, the brothers learned the art of candy and dessert making from an uncle who had already settled in America.
The brothers first opened shop on the corner of Gwinnett and Habersham streets, and in the summer of 2004, Hollywood producer Stratton Leopold, youngest son of Peter Leopold, opened up the Broughton location.
“We still own our original location, and we’re hoping to host our 100th birthday at that location,” said Ferrara.
The annual outdoor birthday bash kicks off at 11 a.m. on Broughton Street, which will be blocked off from Lincoln to Abercorn Street. The day features a variety of fun and activities.
The DIRTT Kids’ Zone will offer free professional face painting, LEGO activities, crafts and games with prizes.
The Legacy Irish Dance Academy, Maxine Patterson's School of Dance and The Ballet School of Savannah will all be performing at different times throughout the party.
New this year, Chatham Emergency Services will bring an ambulance and ladder truck. Children can participate in the shop's largest I Pledge for Ice Cream event, reciting the Pledge of Allegiance as the American flag hangs from the 100-foot ladder truck. Each child who participates will receive a free ice cream scoop.
“Being in a military town, it will be great to see the kids reciting the pledge and to see kids support patriotism amongst service men and women,” said Ferrara.
Also new this year are services by Oliver Bentleys Barking Bakery, which will provide a doggie oasis with ice water and free doggie sundaes for pets during the celebration.
Live Oak Public Libraries will have activities for kids and Oatland Island Wildlife Center will bring some of their animals to visit. A percentage of T-shirt sales from the event will go to help Oatland Island recover after an EF-1 tornado tore through July 27.
“We always want to give back, especially when someone is in need,” said Ferrera.
To cut down on the famous lines outside of Leopold's, there will be an additional two ice cream carts open outside to serve the more than 8,000 expected customers.
And at 3 p.m., kids and kids at heart will be needed to blow out the candles on the 99th birthday cake.
“We’re excited to see everyone again this year, and we appreciate the local community always supporting us,” said Ferrera.