Birdsall’s Ice Cream re-opens following renovations | Local

Ice cream fans are in for a treat with news of a historic Mason City establishment opening its doors for the first time this year. 

After spending the past few months closed to make renovations, Birdsall’s Ice Cream re-opened at 4 p.m. on Friday. 

According to Marc Murray, one of the four owners of the store, Birdsall’s interior hadn’t been updated significantly in nearly 50 years, leading the ownership group to decide to close down in late November to make some much needed improvements. 

The interior has been completely overhauled, but with the intention to maintain the feel of the original design. 

“It’s the same layout they had before, but we just refreshed everything,” Murray said. “We kept it nostalgic, wanted to make it look like a 1960s malt shop.”

BIrdsalls 2

The interior of Birdsall’s Ice Cream on North Federal Avenue in Mason City.

Zachary Dupont

While waiting on a few pieces of equipment, specifically, a new dipping cabinet which isn’t coming until May, Birdsall’s will offer a limited selection of ice cream each day. 

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However, Murray said that the ice cream will still be the made in-house, just as it has been for all years prior.

There is one new menu offering: fresh Dutch poffertjes, which are essentially mini pancakes with your choice of toppings.  

Birdsall’s has been located at its same Mason City location at 518 N. Federal Ave for over 90 years, opening its doors originally in the 1930s. 

Murray, and the rest of four-person ownership team, purchased the ice cream shop in 2021, following the death of the previous owner in 2020. 

Birdsall's Ice Cream coming back under new ownership and hopes to be open in weeks

The four owners and operators, Marc and Michelle Murray, as well as Anne Schmit and Gary Schmit, are working with Mark Repp to get up and running.

Birdsall’s will operate from 4:00 to 10:00 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday. 

“We love this new renovation, it feels so fresh and clean,” Murray said. “We’re really excited to be back and to see what people think of the place.” 

Zachary Dupont covers local government and business development for the Globe Gazette. You can reach him at 641-421-0533 or [email protected]. Follow Zachary on Twitter at @ZachNDupont

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