John Hooper — owner of Christie’s Country Store, which leases its gazebo to Frosty Bear ice cream — says:
I am saddened to inform you that Frosty Bear will not open this season. John Martin — aka Frosty — has hit some tough times, and must contract his operations.
I think it’s been a 7-year run. John came to me in 2009 when, as a graphic artist, he was having problems finding jobs. He rented the gazebo and, at the same time, worked for an hourly wage at the cafe in the Darien library. He would rush to us at 2 p.m. in order to open every day.
In time he bought the rights to the cafe, and opened a small ice cream shop in Monroe. His 2 daughters helped out in all locations.
Selling ice cream is not easy, and many more well-capitalized folks have entered the business selling ice cream or frozen yogurt.
Early last summer, John got tough news that his oldest daughter Lauren, who had just graduated from UConn, was diagnosed with MS. A month later, Alyson was having trouble scooping hard ice cream. She, a UConn student, was diagnosed with the disease as well.
Our customers may have noticed that he had trouble staffing the gazebo this year, and this is why. It got a little worse when his wife Ann, broke her ankle. The challenges have just become too great for him to stay open.
We are so sad to see him go. But you can find John at the Darien Library on the Post Road, and at 695 Main Street, (Rt 25), in Monroe.