While temperatures continue to reach the 90s and upper 80s, one great way to cool off is by grabbing an ice cream cone or cup. Frederick County and the area just outside its borders are a treasure trove of locally-owned shops and creameries whose cows provide the milk for their sweet treats. Guests don’t have to settle for just the traditional flavors of chocolate and vanilla. Many offer a variety of unique flavors that will help cool you down. The dog days of summer don’t have to be so ‘ruff’ thanks to these local spots.
South Mountain Creamery
South Mountain Creamery offers two Frederick-area locations to get cool relief from the heat. Its family-owned and -operated farm in Middletown has a small ice cream shop on site, but folks can enjoy much more during a visit. Families can watch staff milk the cows at 1:30 p.m. every day or bottle-feed one of the farm’s baby calves at 4 p.m. You have to sign up ahead of time, and there is a small fee, but it is totally worth it! There is also a playground on site, so kids can run off some of the sweets.
If you are in Downtown Frederick, stop by the South Mountain Ice Cream Shop, located inside the former Hometown Harvest Kitchen on Carroll Creek. Offering fresh-from-the-farm ice cream, it has a number of fun creations including sundaes and milkshakes.
Glamourview Creamery has a food truck known as The Dairy Bar, which can be found during the warm-weather months throughout Frederick County. Be sure to check Glamourview’s Facebook page to see where it will be throughout any given week. Usually, at least once a week, patrons can find it at the creamery’s Walkersville-based farm, where folks can get a close-up view of some of its dairy cows while waiting for their orders.
Rocky Point Creamery
Featuring more than 80 different flavors of homemade ice cream, this Tuscarora-based spot is a great place to go after a day on the nearby C&O Canal path. Each week, Rocky Point has a different list of available flavors, so look at its Facebook page before you go if you are in the mood for a specific treat like the salty and sweet Crabby Cow or peanut butter Oreo. The site has a drive-thru window, so there is no need to stand out in the heat. Be sure to check out the annual sunflower field in late summer. Folks can take pictures, cut their favorites and provide a donation for St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital.
Happy Cow Creamery
Located at Grand View Acres Farm in the Libertytown area, Happy Cow Creamery provides guests with soft-serve ice cream treats made from milk produced by its herd of dairy cows. Guests may come to the creamery’s walk-up window to order and enjoy their cups, cones, sundaes, milkshakes and banana splits at its outdoor seating area, which overlooks the pastures its cows call home.
Pocantico Jersey Farm and Creamery
Just a couple of minutes from the Frederick County border, this Union Bridge -based creamery serves up soft-serve ice cream in a cup or cone, as well as milkshakes. Guests can sit in its outdoor seating area and see a nearby pen where baby cows are kept. This spot is usually open from mid-May to Labor Day weekend. Be sure to join Pocantico’s loyalty program so that with five ice cream purchases, your sixth is free!
This year, Jimmie Cone celebrates two huge anniversaries: its Mount Airy location turns 25, and its Damascus location hits 60 years. Flavors change weekly, but a menu including cones, cups, milkshakes, sundaes, ice cream cakes, snowballs and boats is consistent. When looking at the toppings menu, you’ll notice sprinkles are called jimmies. If you come to the Mount Airy location on the first and third Saturdays from April to October, you’ll also get to see a number of hot rods and classic cars on display as part of the shop’s Cruise Night festivities.
Beef ‘n Buns ‘n Paradise
Located just outside of Downtown Frederick near the Frederick Fairgrounds is Beef ‘n Buns ‘n Paradise, a staple for many years. The shop not only provides fresh local burgers, jumbo all-beef hot dogs, deli sandwiches and subs but also delicious frozen treats like soft-serve ice cream, sundaes, milkshakes, banana boats and ice cream pies and floats.
Frederick Fudge & Ice Cream Company
If your sweet tooth is in need of a major fix, head to Frederick Fudge & Ice Cream Company. A variety of flavors that change weekly are available at this Everedy Square destination that has a large stuffed bear standing outside its doors. Some popular ice cream flavors include cotton candy, coconut chocolate almond and strawberry cheesecake. Its fudge flavors also change every week and might include red velvet, salted caramel and Butterfinger.
A place that would make Willy Wonka happy is Thurmont’s Gateway Candyland, which has more than 500 varieties of candy on site. Patrons can find some of their childhood favorites, along with new discoveries, and fill a bag to take home. The shop’s soft-serve ice cream is a favorite among guests and includes four regular flavors: vanilla, chocolate, peanut butter and raspberry, as well as two rotating slots. Don’t leave without trying one of Gateway’s specialty milkshakes—but bring a large appetite, as they are quite huge.
Little Red Barn Ice Cream Cafe
Located inside a restored century-old barn, this Jefferson -based business is just off of U.S. 340 and makes for a great treat after a day of hiking, biking or swimming in nearby Harpers Ferry, Point of Rocks or Brunswick. Patrons will find sandwiches, soups and salads on the menu in addition to frozen treats like soft-serve ice cream, milkshakes, sundaes and Sno Cones.