With this year’s Free Cone Day coinciding with the Grand Re-Opening of Ben & Jerry’s at The Shoppes at Farmington Valley, co-owners Brandi and Phil Killoran had a big goal on their minds. They wanted to break last year’s record of $2,000.00 in donations to the Town of Canton Volunteer Fire & EMS Department.
It was a good day.
Some patrons showed up just to enjoy the free, super premium ice cream and to check out the beautiful new Ben & Jerry’s store, with its expanded seating and new menu items. There is even a custom mural with a kayaking cow.
But most of the people, who traveled from all over the region, also came out to thank and support Canton’s volunteer firefighters and EMTs. By the end of Free Cone Day, their donations totaled $2,509.18. This brings the grand total of donations to the Department, from Ben & Jerry’s Free Cone Days – 2005 to 2014 – to over $18,000.00.
From noon until 8:00 p.m., volunteer firefighters, EMTs, Fire Police and Cadets spoke with the lines of people who stood in rain, then wind, then even some sunshine as they waited to be served one of over 5000 cones and cups of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream that would be scooped for free that day.
Once their ice cream was secured, attendees enjoyed tours of Canton’s Engines 1 and 4 and the Ambulance. Many of the younger patrons, and some older ones too, also paid a visit with fire celebrity, Sparky the Dog.
“This was the best Free Cone Day ever,” said Phil Killoran. “We want to thank everyone in the community and beyond who came out. We love supporting Canton’s volunteer firefighters and EMTs.”
Department Chief Richard Hutchings summed up the day. “As always, 100% of these donations will be applied toward the purchase of new equipment and tools for our volunteers. We thank our community partners, Phil and Brandi Killoran of Ben & Jerry’s and all those who donated, for their continued generosity and support of our work.”