As you can see in this photo from the YWCA’s Association Monthly, Silver Bay was already famous for ice cream in 1914. Further testimony came from Helen Hutchcraft, a Wellesley graduate, in “The Summer Conference,” from the pages of The North American Student, that same year. She wrote:
“The first year out of college lonely? Yes. But the loneliness is much easier to bear because of the friends found at Silver Bay—friendships formed by long tramps together, jolly good times over college games and ice cream cones, quiet, solemn talks when we spoke from our hearts and prayed together.”
In 1924, we read in The Missionary Herald that at Silver Bay, “it was the usual custom to go to the store for ice cream after the platform meeting.”
Amen to that. However, what of the fabulous Silver Bay ice cream of more recent times? For that, I turn to Paul Nasrani. Paul Nasrani grew up in Hazelton, Pennsylvania, and worked on a farm. His family came to Silver Bay in August, every summer, for a week during which Paul and his sister, Julia, could have ice cream at The Store every night. Paul dreamed of some day making his own ice cream, of creating his own flavors. But, as even the best children sometimes do, Paul instead became the Chief Financial Officer of a company in Manhattan. Fortunately, his love of Silver Bay and ice cream would be his salvation.
In 2001, a friend bought him an ice cream maker. He made so much he had to give it away, which was great news for his friends and co-workers who raved about his ice cream. And then, one fateful day in January of 2003, he was passing through Grand Central Station and saw that an ice cream shop was closing, and auctioning off all its equipment. On the spot, Paul bought their 700-pound batch freezer for ice cream production. He wasn’t sure at that moment how any of it was going to happen, but he did manage to move the freezer, and found a friend in New Jersey who had room for it.
In 2004, Paul left his CFO position behind, took the freezer up to Silver Bay, and began making ice cream at The Store. He worked with Silver Bay to create internship positions which brought international students majoring in dairy or food sciences at Penn State and Cornell University to Silver Bay to spend the summer making ice cream and developing new flavors. He started a program for children, helping them design and make their own ice cream flavors with a hand-cranked machine.
“What better place than Silver Bay to make and sell ice cream,” he told the Lake George Mirror in 2008. “The Silver Bay Store made and sold its own ice cream in the 1940s and the 1960s, but not since then. But it seemed like it should be a natural part of the Silver Bay experience.”
In 2006, Paul found the Boice Brothers Dairy in Kingston, N.Y., nicely located in the Hudson Valley between New York City and Silver Bay, and began producing his ice cream on a commercial scale, year-round, under the banner of the Adirondack Creamery. The all-natural ice cream is made with milk from hormone-free cows, delivered daily from eight family farms, and includes cream, sugar and eggs, flavored with vanilla, chocolate, nuts and fruits.
In 2009, Adirondack Creamery ice cream received kosher certification. Packaged in pints, the ice cream is now available in stores from Lake George to New York City. In 2010, another brand of ice cream was served at the Silver Bay Store, but one can hope, perhaps even pray, for the return of Adirondack Creamery in 2011.
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Visit the Adirondack Creamery’s website at www.adirondackcreamery.com.