AURORA, Colo. (KDVR) — Ice cream trucks are now legal in Aurora, Colorado, after having been banned more than a half-century ago.
The Aurora City Council voted Friday to thaw a law that banned the trucks in 1957 and allow licensed trucks to sell sweet treats on the streets ahead of the Fourth of July holiday weekend.
The council’s decision is likely a welcome one for the kids of Aurora, but vendors were ready to celebrate, too.
“It’s a great day for the people of Aurora. It’s a great day for the city of Aurora,” said Paul Capley, with Ice Cream Wagon. “I’ve been in the business 25 years, and we’ve gone to city council meetings with absolutely no luck at all.”
Capley called it a historic day for his business and other ice cream truck owners.
In 1957, the city of Aurora banned ice cream trucks, calling them a “nuisance.” The law was apparently passed in response to residents who opposed the ice cream trucks driving up and down their streets. Some also argued that the trucks posed a safety hazard for kids who might be injured while running after the vendors.
Councilor on a mission to lift ice cream truck ban
Aurora Councilman Dustin Zvonek has been working to repeal and review outdated laws alongside the city’s Red Tape Reduction Committee — and the ban on ice cream trucks was high on the list.
Zvonek said that when he and the other members of the committee first learned of the 1957 ban, they let out “a collective ‘What?'”
“We just couldn’t believe it,” said Zvonek.
Shocked by the initial ban, it was Zvonek’s goal to have it repealed by the busy Fourth of July holiday weekend. He succeeded: The new ordinance was passed unanimously on the first reading.
Kids sprint the streets to meet the ice cream truck
On Friday afternoon, Rick, the driver of the Ice Cream Wagon, was presented with the city’s first legal license since the ban was enacted. He wasted no time getting to work.
Hoping to help kids (and their parents) beat the scorching summer heat, Rick loaded his truck with firecrackers, ice cream sandwiches and Choco Tacos, among other treats. For hours, Rick brought joy to an Aurora neighborhood, sending toddlers and teens sprinting down their street for a taste.
“We were in the middle of watching a movie and then we heard the ice cream truck,” 14-year-old Katie Auld said. “Then we all just started running and running to the ice cream truck. It brings me back to when I was a kid, to when I was 7 in Kansas, and I would get ice cream every summer.”
So many city children are happy and excited to see the trucks’ sweet return.
“It’s refreshing but also fun, because it’s not like you’re eating just like ice, you’re eating like cool-flavored ice. You just get to have fun, stay cool and stay amazing,” 14-year-old Zoe Hepola said.
The hardest decision for the neighborhood children? Deciding which icy treat to choose. But the youngest customer of the day, 4-year-old Achilles, went straight for a Spider-Man popsicle, ripped it open and took a big bite. He gave it his stamp of approval — a big thumbs up.