Before computers, Velcro or microwave ovens, the world had Carvel Ice Cream. Best known for premium soft serve ice cream, hand dipped products and uniquely shaped ice cream cakes, Carvel has over 500 retail ice cream shops across 25 states and in seven countries.
This Memorial Day Carvel celebrates its 75th anniversary. On that same day in 1934, Tom Carvel’s ice cream truck suffered a flat tire in Hartsdale, NY.
The site later became the first Carvel retail ice cream shop. While many remember the distinct voice of Tom Carvel, the first CEO to star in his own commercials, few know that same man was called the “Father of Franchising,” offered the first Buy One, Get One Free coupon and held 540 other patents, trademarks and copyright registrations from mechanical and product designs to methods and technical developments of food equipment.
Carvel’s patented “no air pump” created thick, creamy premium soft serve vanilla and chocolate ice cream that quickly put the brand on the map. Its popularity increased with the introduction of uniquely shaped character ice cream cakes such as Fudgie the Whale, Cookie Puss and Hug Me Bear. With a unique name and clever promotion, Tom Carvel put his signature on every menu item from Flying Saucers, whose ads featured Captain Carvel, to Old Fashioned Sundaes with the famous Wednesday is Sundae promotion.