Updated: Mar 10
Part ice cream parlor. Part sandwich shop. Part comic book store. Throw in a retro color scheme with hints of pop culture from past to present. And add a dining area with walls covered in life-size hand-painted murals of iconic figures.
That’s Re-OhZ!, a new eatery at 115 Broadway in La Cygne. The new business had its grand opening on Saturday, Feb. 12, and despite the frigid temperature outdoors, it was deemed by the owners to have been a great success.
Preparing for the opening of this shop has been a labor of love for Reyo and Logan Smith. For months they have worked to renovate this brick storefront into a different kind of shop for La Cygne.
Logan, the son of Keith and Beth Smith, all long-time La Cygne residents, said the couple hoped to bring a different experience to the city.
First, this isn’t your grandmother’s ice cream parlor, but it’s one that she would enjoy. You can order a scoop of ice cream on a sugar cone or in a bowl. Or you can order a “slap.” Those of you who have ever stopped by Cold Stone Creamery or other boutique ice cream shops will recognize the technique.
Ice cream is scooped from cartons onto a refrigerated marble or stainless steel
slab (Re-OhZ! has both). Then a custom mix of flavors – candy sprinkles, Oreo cookies, chocolate, strawberries, nuts or a host of other offerings – is hand-mixed into the ice cream with spatulas as the server “slaps” the flavors into the into a scoop that goes into one of their custom-dipped cones or a cup.
While the Re-OhZ! team purchases most of their cones – offering cones dipped into chocolate or other flavors around the rim – they also hand-make waffle cones to add to what Logan described as a nachos-style ice cream treat.
For those with a penchant for fruit-flavored ice cream, the server will add fresh fruit to the slap. Want strawberry ice cream? Those are fresh strawberries in there.
Re-OhZ! also serves custom-made sandwiches that offer a variety of meats, cheeses and toppings. Turkey, ham, roast beef, salami, pepperoni and capicola are on the menu, as are pepper jack, cheddar, Swiss and provolone.
Much of the inspiration for the shop comes from a burger joint in Florida, Smith said.
He said that he and Reyo got a great deal of help from their friends and mentors in completing the renovation and getting the store ready for Saturday’s event. He credited Mike Hilton, owner of ProActive Agriculture next door to the new shop, with being a mentor for a young entrepreneurs and helping them find the building.
In addition to both sets of parents, Smith also credited Damien Hesse, a contractor and friend, who helped bring the construction together. “He bent over backwards to help,” he said.
He also said that Tommy Capp of TC Iron Designs of La Cygne designed a custom metal sign with a blue backlight that will add a distinctive presence on the street.
While the ice cream and sandwich shop is unique and innovative in its approach to marketing, at least for Linn County, Smith said he hopes to roll out other surprises as the business gets off the ground.
“We’re looking forward to doing different things,” he said.
It appears that Re-OhZ! Is off to a good start. You can learn more about Re-OhZ! by visiting its Facebook page.