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2019 Boise Ice Cream Festival Updates Event Schedule, Reveals Locations

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Things are evolving quickly for the 2019 Boise Ice Cream Festival, the first event of its kind in Boise and, according to event founder Scott Wink of Boise's Best Bites, the country.

Just last week, BW reported that the festival would run Tuesday-Sunday, May 28-June 2, but since then the schedule has expanded, and events are now set to pop up downtown from May 28 through Saturday, June 15. A list of the set-in-stone events (many of which are already already offering tickets) is available on the festival's website, but Wink said 10-15 more will be added in the next week due to increased demand, with the last of the additions hopefully filtering in by Wednesday, May 1.

"People were emailing me from Alaska saying they're coming into town for this. Elko, northern Nevada, they said they're driving up four hours, four and a half hours to come to some of these events. So it was just a combination of all of the business owners saying 'yes' and people [being] willing to travel to it that made us feel like we had something kind of special and we want to do it right," said Wink.

The peak of the festival will be the so-called "Grand Tasting" event at JUMP on Saturday, June 15, which Wink is organizing with Kris Ott of Culinary Collective Network. The expansive ice cream soiree will feature more than 200 flavors of ice cream, most of them local, from about 15 vendors paired with a huge variety of toppings, games and entertainment. A $25 ticket will score guests tastes of up to 120 of the desserts. Wink said that for the sake of everyone's stomachs the tastes spoonfuls, not cups, though they're larger than the typical ice cream shop tasting-spoon portion.

"We didn't think anybody should try 200 [ice creams] in an hour and a half, because we kind of calculated it out and that could almost be a quart of ice cream, and that's just crazy. But we definitely want everybody to try all of the different flavors and see all of the kind of cool things people are making in the region all under one roof," he said. "... So they'll get a sheet of paper with a list of all the varieties in the room and let them kind of work the room and seek out the ones they're most interested in."



BICF will feed ticket holders in three 90-minute shifts at JUMP, from 12:30-2 p.m., 2-3:30 p.m. and 3:30-5 p.m. June 15. It's a family friendly event, and kids of all ages are welcome.

Apart from the grand tasting, other events include partnerships with local restaurants and coffee shops for specialty ice cream-centric desserts—Petite 4, for example, will offer diners a choice of creative ice cream sandwiches after their meals Tuesday-Saturday, June 4-8—panel discussions, workshops and more. Some standouts in the current lineup include panels on "The History of Ice Cream in Boise" at Goody's Soda Fountain, a family comedy trolley tour of downtown Boise featuring onboard ice cream and entertainment from comedian Megan Bryant, an ice cream- and waffle cone-making class, and "Pedals and (Ice Cream) Pints," which will turn the normally alcohol-carrying Pedals and Pints bike bar into a mobile ice cream-tasting center.

"We're really kind of pushing the idea of what Boise considers as a festival," Wink said. "I think a lot of people when they hear 'festival' they think they're going to show up in a park and they're going to wait in line at a food truck, and that's really not what we're doing."

He called the BICF a "grassroots idea and effort," crediting local businesses for proposing event partnerships. 

"We have no corporate sponsors. We're just doing this because the community is wanting it, the restaurants are game and we'll see what happens," he said.

Keep and eye on the BICF website to see the rest of the events roll in.