While Philadelphia and its suburbs have changed over the last seven decades, Mister Softee luckily has remained the same, writes Lynette Tolbert Hazelton for Philadelphia Magazine.
Mister Softee was started sixty-five years ago by two sons of Irish immigrants. The company started from a West Philly garage and quickly revolutionized the ice-cream business.
Today, this third-generation multimillion-dollar business is quietly run by two grandsons of one of the founders.
The business is the oldest and largest franchisor of soft ice-cream trucks in the nation. To this day, the company remains a launching pad for small mom-and-pop businesses, particularly for first-generation immigrants.
Decades later, the trucks still look the same on the outside, with the same exterior decals, including Mister Softee’s iconic mascot, Conehead, and the pictorial menu.
The same, familiar jingle still draws kids to the trucks that operate in the region as they move through Elkins Park and other local neighborhoods. And everybody still loves Mister Softee.
“I sell a lot, a lot, a lot of cones,” said Morad Khalil, a Mister Softee franchisee who has been delighting kids and adults alike with cones of soft-serve in the area since the 1990s.
Read more about Mister Softee in Philadelphia Magazine.