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Parkview Ice Cream Parlor Offers Escape From Hot Summer

July 23, 2009
By S. Alexander Gerould

Just in time for the heart of summer, visitors to Westfield will have a new place to chill off and treat their sweet tooth.

Parkview Ice Cream Parlor, located at 3 East Main St., Westfield, offers a variety of ice cream flavors to suit almost any taste. The shop also features Grower’s grape products, maple and honey products from Wayne Harrington, fudge, books on the region’s history, art work, and a special corner featuring Pillowcasegram.

“It’s been going well,” said proprietor Marybelle Beigh. “We use Perry’s Ice Cream, although we will probably get special ice cream from people locally who make ice cream.”

It is only fitting that the idea for opening an ice cream shop came the way it did for Ms. Beigh, as she also serves as the town’s historian.

“When I became the town historian, I started researching the old stuff and one of the things I started researching was all the old ice cream parlors that used to be here,” Ms. Beigh said. “When I first came back here, this place was for rent. I talked (about) doing something in here. I was (talking) away to my haircutter, and we talked about it and he said this place might come available at some point.”

With a little electrical, floor and construction help from several community members, the shop was ready to go.

“I’ve had nothing but positive support from just about every single person in town, from the officials right down to people coming … and offering to do this and that and people referring people to me,” Ms. Beigh said. “It’s taken half the town to get us open.”

However, as with all businesses, sometimes things don’t always work as planned. For instance, Ms. Beigh bought a soda fountain but found several parts to be broken. She contacted American Soda Fountain in Chicago, and the company was able to supply the needed parts.

“The main issue right now has been just getting … our soda fountain up and running,” Ms. Beigh said. “I bought it as is and almost everything was broken on it. I bought it for a small amount of money.”

Still, the issues haven’t stopped Ms. Beigh with her latest venture – one which she never saw herself doing.

“I’ve never been a businesswoman in my whole life,” she said. “I’ve always been a teacher and a musician. This is all very new to me.”

Parkview Ice Cream Parlor is open Monday through Friday from 12:30 to 8:30 p.m, Saturday from 12 to 8:30 p.m. and Sunday from 12 to 4 p.m. Located at 3 East Main St., in Westfield, the shop features a variety of ice cream and other items. The store can be reached by calling 326-2457.

Article Photos

Marybelle Beigh, center in black, proprietor of Parkview Ice Cream Parlor, with the assistance of manager Alan Hermann, center, cuts a ribbon during the grand opening of her shop while Westfield officials and employees of the shop look on.



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