The Snow Cones of Summer
Sauce magazine is a great part of our area’s literary and journalism scene. In this month’s issue, it has a wonderful article on the popularity of snow cones in St. Louis. The article does a perfect job of bringing out how the people who run snow cone stands are entrepreneurs in the purest form. The key to success in this business is in some pretty basic timing. You don’t see snow cone stands open in the winter. In fact, one of the stands I sometimes visit on S. Laclede Station Road turns into a Christmas tree lot each winter. Owners expand hours when its hot out (they are possibly the only people who like heat waves), and close early when it’s cold or raining. Other than that, it’s location, location, location.
When I was in high school and college, on several occasions I spent the summer working at Rio Syrup Co. This is one of the nation’s largest sno-cone syrup manufacturers, based right here in mid-town, by
AG Edwards Wachovia. My great friend Bill Tomber is quoted extensively in the Sauce article. As someone who has lifted thousands of cases of cherry syrup onto trucks in my life, I can vouch for his statement on the popularity of that flavor:
What’s behind St. Louisans’ appetite for cherry snow cones? “It’s kind of a default flavor. It’s red, it’s bright ? it’s a good-tasting flavor, but you sort of know what you’re getting,” said Tomber.
So whether your are at Tower Tee, at a Cardinals game, in Old Webster, or anywhere else with one of the hundreds of snow cone stands in our area, enjoy a snow cone this summer and think about all the creative entrepreneurship that goes into every slurp!