When people say they can’t get enough of Kings Island’s blue ice cream, eating two pounds in one sitting is probably not what they have in mind. Sunday, July 1 was National Blue Ice Cream Day at Kings Island, and the event was a sweet tooth’s paradise.
There were blue ice cream themed foods galore, from fudge to cotton candy to funnel cakes to blueberry BBQ sauce for chicken wings. Plus, guests had awesome photo opportunities in front of the blue ice cream billboards, perfect for an Instagram or Facebook photo to show off their love of the classic concoction.
Contestants in the blue ice cream eating contest polished off two pounds of blue ice cream for a chance to win a prize package that included two ride passes. As the competitors used only their mouths to gobble up the ice cream, the blue treat ran down their faces and beards as it melted in the sun and slid down their mess-protection ponchos. Nevertheless, the warriors marched on, digging into their bowls until a victor emerged. The winner, Michael Long of Bellevue, Kentucky, finished the whole container in under seven minutes, all for his daughter who watched from the crowd on International Street near the Eiffel Tower.
In 1982, Michael Jackson released Thriller, Steven Spielberg made us fall in love with a little alien who wanted to phone home and Kings Island debuted blueberry-flavored, soft serve ice cream. Little did they know that a simple blue ice cream cone would become a staple in Kings Island history and Cincinnati culture.
Park officials didn’t realize blue ice cream’s popularity until it took a hiatus in 1992. However, it quickly returned after an abundance of guests voiced their thoughts, and it hasn’t left since.
Blue ice cream has been around for so long now that it spans generations, and many younger fans know it simply as “blue ice cream,” unaware of its Huckleberry Hound and Smurf origins. However, old-school park fans know better and aren’t afraid to correct you. “That’s called Smurf ice cream. Get it right,” one follower recently stated on a Kings Island Instagram photo of the ice cream.
Blue ice cream is so popular that its impact has gone beyond Kings Island’s borders and become a part of Cincinnati culture. Cincy Shirts sells “IT’S CALLED A SMURF CONE” T-shirts with a picture of the ice cream. Though others outside of Cincinnati have tried to sell blue ice cream, it’s clear that it belongs here. Other parks have tried selling the cones with no success, while Kings Island continues to sell literally hundreds of cones and bowls each day. It will always be a Smurf cone to some, but regardless of the name it will forever hold a place in people’s hearts and taste buds.
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