By Sara Butterfass
DELANO, MN Imagine a Minnesota summer day. It’s 87 degrees Fahrenheit with a humidity of 73 percent. Standing out in the sun, you begin to sweat and your mouth longs for something cool.
Now imagine holding a waffle cone or dish, your choice, containing three scoops of your favorite ice cream.
Imagine your first bite. You can taste the sweet sugary flavor, and the cold ice cream is refreshing in such heat.
This is exactly the type of service Linnie’s Ice Cream hopes to provide for the Delano community.
Located on River Street between Curves and Taekwondo, Linnie’s Ice Cream is ready for business. The shop is owned by Jon and Sheri Steinmetz of Delano.
Before it became an ice cream shop, the building was home to Jon’s realty business.
Due to the difficult housing market, Jon moved his office home and attempted to rent the space. It wasn’t filling fast, and sat empty for a time.
As the economy worsened, Jon and Sheri realized their kids needed more work. It was hard for 15-year-old Linnea “Linnie” to find work, and Adam, 18, needed more hours before going off to college.
The idea for the ice cream shop was “a 2 o’clock-in-the morning idea,” Jon said.
“We thought it might be easier to sell ice cream than a house,” Sheri said about the change in services.
The Steinmetz’ received a special event license for the 4th of July holiday and were open for nine days as a trial run.
The Steinmetz’ were kept busy during the holiday weekend. They remained open until 11:30 p.m. on the 4th and didn’t make it home themselves until 1 a.m.
After the warm reception they received from the community, and the many questions about how long they had been open, and whether or not they were hiring, they are more anxious than ever to open.
Currently, they are in the process of getting approval from the state.
“The city has been great,” Sheri said multiple times. With the state however, there are “a lot of steps you have to take, and you have to make sure you take them in the right order,” she explained.
The floor will need to be tiled and a few plumbing issues need to be resolved, but the counter, freezers, and ice cream are all in place.
As the former mayor of Delano and a businessman from the community, Jon thought that “dessert would compliment all of them (the other eateries in the entertainment district).”
“We’re not trying to be a fast-food place, we want a place where people can get old fashioned ice cream, and we just want people to hang out downtown more,” Jon went on to explain.
Once Linnie’s Ice Cream gets state approval, the Steinmetz’ hope to be open after school, from approximately 3 to 9 p.m. and weekends.
Plans for other desserts are being discussed by the whole family. Jon is in favor of pies in the winter. Adam wants mini doughnuts, Sheri wants to add hot chocolate and soups for lunch time, and Linnea seemed fine with sticking to ice cream.
“Once we start making more money, we’ll see how it goes,” Jon said, ending the debate.
Linnie’s Ice Cream offers cones and dishes of ice cream, in three sizes: Little Linnie, Just Right Regular, and Big Bubba.
Candy bars, malt cups, freezies, and bomb pops are also available.
The Steinmetz’ are excited to officially open. They have received so many questions about when Linnie’s Ice Cream will open, and want everyone in the community to know they are working on it.