Local Entrepreneur Is Dedicated To Giving Back To The Community

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Bringing amusement park excitement everywhere it stops, Hamilton County’s new Kona Ice truck blends entertainment and gourmet frozen treats into an experience unlike any other in the area.

“When our customers get a glimpse of the decked out truck and its vibrant colors, the looks on their faces say it all,” said Kyle Elrod, who joins his wife, Dei, as the local residents and entrepreneurs responsible for shifting good times into overdrive in Hamilton County, including Bradley County and Chattanooga with the launch of their third Kona Ice truck to better serve the area. The Elrods have been in Hamilton County since 2010 and are continuing to grow to meet the demand of the community.

Kona Ice’s escape from the ordinary begins as the sounds of tropical calypso music fill the air at each event and group gathering. The fun continues as all in attendance get their overflowing cups of freshly shaved ice and then help themselves to any of the ten tastes on the truck’s Flavorwav (an interactive dispensing system in which individuals select from one or more of the flavors to pour over their fluffy snow) or the additional 20-plus flavors and 500 different combinations available.

“It’s an opportunity to kick back, let your hair down and just get a bit goofy for a few minutes,” said Mr. Elrod. “Kids go crazy and we see adults getting just as into it as the young ones. We’ll even throw a few leis or Kona t-shirts on our customers, and send them home with a fun Kona Ice cup. From start to finish, we engage all their senses.”

Equally as appealing about the launch of Kona Ice in Hamilton County is its philanthropic commitment to the communities it serves. The Elrods are continuing Kona Ice’s tradition of donating thousands of dollars each year to local school groups, teams and community organizations. As the Elrods book events with these groups, they pledge to give back a percentage of the proceeds from each stop. As of June 2013, the Elrods have given back over $75,000. Nationwide, Kona Ice has donated more than $10 million dollars.
 

“The Elrods share our passion for giving back,” said Tony Lamb, founder and president of Kona Ice, who created the concept after witnessing the fear in his daughter’s face during a visit from an old rusty ice cream truck. “We want to engrain Kona Ice into the fabric of the towns where we live, work and have families. Returning a portion of what we earn back to the groups helps ensure that they continue to make a positive impact on the lives of our friends, neighbors and family members.”

Beyond fundraisers, popular spots for Kona Ice stops in Hamilton County and Chattanooga include birthday parties, corporate events and neighborhood socials. The Elrod’s truck also maintains regular weekday and weekend routes. To learn more, contact Kyle Elrod at 423 402-1811 or at kelrod@kona-ice.com  facebook.com/konaicetn


Charles Siskin: A Bite Out Of The Big Apple

I was never aware of food courts until I made my first trip to London way too many decades ago. It was there I discovered the Great Food Hall at Harrod’s Department Store. Truthfully I’ve never seen anything comparable since. I have been privileged to visit lots of outdoor stalls and indoor markets in the Far East, South America, Australia, Europe and right here in this country, ... (click for more)

Sticky Fingers Honors First Responders With Free All-You-Can-Eat Buffet This Sunday

Sticky Fingers will pay tribute to local American heroes by offering a free All-You-Can-Eat Buffet to active first responders in the area this Sunday from 11 a.m.-3 p.m at both Chattanooga locations:  420 Broad St. and 2031 Hamilton Place Blvd. “The entire Sticky Fingers family wanted to take this time to show our appreciation of the first responders in our community ... (click for more)

DA Pinkston Files Petition To Declare 2 Gangs A Public Nuisance

District Attorney General Neal Pinkston filed a petition on Monday asking that two Chattanooga gangs, the Gangster Disciples and the Grape Street Crips, and their members be declared public nuisances. General Pinkston is also "asking that injunctive relief be given to the law-abiding residents of East Lake by establishing a Safety Zone that covers most of their neighborhood." ... (click for more)

2 Boaters Die In Suspected Carbon Monoxide Poisoning On Chickamauga Lake

Two boaters and their pet were pronounced dead at the scene of suspected carbon monoxide poisoning on Chickamauga Lake.  Kristy D. James and Mike L. Richardson of Chattanooga were reported missing to the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office earlier in the day by a concerned family member. The boaters had not been heard from since Saturday. Tennessee Wildlife Resources ... (click for more)

Of Course Gangs Are A Public Nuisance

Now, I don't know it all.  Beginning with my parents, folks of all sorts have been actively pointing out my ignorance for more than seven decades now.  So I'm well aware that I don't know it all.  In recent months I've begun to develop an appreciation for the local work of Mr. Neal Pinkston; I've been impressed with several things he's been doing in his official ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Arnold Palmer’s Greatness

This is hardly meant to be flippant but I’d be willing to bet I’ve been in the presence of more great people than anyone you know. I’ve never ranked them, or ever dared to wonder who was the greatest, such as Muhammad Ali or Elvis Presley, but there are two traits that those who reach the highest pinnacle have in common. First, not a one of them was any good at what made them famous ... (click for more)