A choice is something we (as Americans) are used to getting but with Donnelly’s Ice Cream the one thing you don’t get to decide is the flavor of the day. As the Donnelly’s motto attests, “Please pick a size, the flavor has already been decided.”
Over the years that we’ve lived in the Adirondack Park, Donnelly’s Homemade Ice Cream has been the only reason some groups we’ve led hiking in the High Peaks have made it down the mountain. A beacon to many a hiker, Donnelly’s Homemade Ice Cream is a social place as well as ice cream pit-stop at the four corners of Route 86 and 186, commonly known as Donnelly’s Corners, just minutes from Saranac Lake. It doesn’t seem to matter how weary we are on a hike off the mountain we can always manage to muster the energy for a cone of the flavor of the day.
Everyone has a symbol that marks the change of seasons. Perhaps the change is noted through nature with leaves turning color, the first snow, robin redbreast, or the blooming of beach roses. At our house we seem to relate everything to dessert. Autumn brings apple pies while winter hosts rum balls and peppermint candies. Spring is the time we annually suffer the consequences of the other seasons and try to backtrack and undo the damage done the rest of the year. Summertime means ice cream.
Since 1920, the Donnelly family has been involved in the dairy industry. But it was in 1953, after two aunts went to a dairy equipment show, that Donnelly’s Corner became synonymous with ice cream. Look to see the original Cherry Burrell ice cream machine still in use today. It is taken apart and sanitized daily then filled with the delicious mixture providing us with the yummy ice cream.
Each day one soft ice cream flavor is offered, twisted with vanilla. Anything not sold daily is packed into containers for sale in the dairy case. Donnelly’s sell more 5,000 gallons of ice cream a season.
Donnelly’s Homemade ice cream is located at 1556 State Route 86, near the intersection of Routes 86 and 186, outside of Saranac Lake. Enjoy a summer treat.
Here is the ice cream schedule for those needing to be “in the know.”
Monday – Nut Surprise
Tuesday – Red or Black Raspberry
Wednesday – Chocolate
Thursday – Fruit Surprise
Friday – Strawberry
Saturday and Sunday – Chocolate
Photo and content © Diane Chase, Adirondack Family Activities ™. Diane is the author of the Adirondack Family Activities Guidebook Series including the recent released Adirondack Family Time: Tri-Lakes and High Peaks Your Guide to Over 300 Activities for Lake Placid, Saranac Lake, Tupper Lake, Keene, Jay and Wilmington areas (with GPS coordinates) This is the first book of a four-book series of Adirondack Family Activities. The next three editions will cover Plattsburgh to Ticonderoga, Long Lake to Old Forge and Newcomb to Lake George.