Three Screams for Ice Cream

College Creamery Sells Sweet Treats for College

Article by Robin Moyer Chung

Photography by Courtesy of College Creamery

Originally published in Westport Lifestyle

When I was young, the thrilling chime of the ice cream truck sent every kid in the neighborhood scampering home and hollering for money. We’d fist our coins and sprint to the street, hotly anticipating its approach.

But the VonLoeser sisters - Reagan (17), Addison (15), and Samantha (12) - don’t wait for the truck to arrive. They are the truck. You’ve probably spotted their College Creamery ’79 Chevy with colorful stripes at Compo or Longshore.

Two years ago, in 2021, their mom, Fabiana, ran across an ad selling the College Creamery ice cream truck business. As “kind of a joke,” Fabiana suggested the girls buy it. “We told them at a young age we weren’t paying for their college,” she explains, and thought it would be a viable way for the girls to earn tuition money while learning how to run a business.

They bought the business that October and were busy booking events as early as January ‘22. “When [the previous owners] said busy, they meant busy,” exclaims Fabiana.

Though Fabiana and her husband, Gavin, own the business on paper, the girls are responsible for its operation. This includes managing the inventory, re-stocking, scheduling events, reading emails, keeping everything clean, etc.

Events can run from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. without breaks (who eats ice cream that early in the morning? “You’d be surprised,” the girls respond.)

But if learning to run a business is the sundae, then life lessons are the cherry on top.

Reagan says of her interaction with so many people, “I wasn’t expecting to improve my socialization skills.” Also, because “there are always little kids and they don’t know what they want,” she’s learned to become more patient with others.

Addison agrees, and adds she’s now a more punctual person, having to focus on “time management with sports and school and business.”

For Samantha, the shaved ice has taught her “there’s always room to improve.” She explains how the long lines of customers made her feel she had to make the shaved ice quickly, “but then you end up spilling syrup and not making it well.” So she slowed down, took her time. Her skills are much improved and everyone still gets their ice in a timely manner.

They’ve also learned about giving back to the communities that support them. They donate portions of sales, raffle prizes, and gift certificates to local philanthropies, schools and sport organizations.

Fabiana, their designated driver (the lack of power steering and tricky journeys require an adult at the wheel), states, “I didn’t expect how much I’d enjoy being in the truck with the kids.”

Her daughters agree, “We love it, we have so much fun!” They mention dance parties and laughing together on the road and at events.

Then Reagan reflects, “The way our parents raised us is to be independent and to make our own way in the world so that we always know how to take care of ourselves.”

Which is the greatest lesson of them all.

But if learning to run a business is the sundae, then life lessons are the cherry on top.

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