Heading over to Dairy Queen on a Saturday afternoon during the heart of summer was one of my favorite experiences while I was growing up. Honestly, who doesn't like grabbing a soft-serve cone or a Blizzard treat?
Even their hot food is great. I find myself drawn to ordering one of their Flamethrower burgers every time I walk through the door. Even with my significant experience as a Dairy Queen customer, I didn't know these 10 fun facts:
1. They were the pioneers of soft-serve ice cream.
You may be able to find soft-serve ice cream in just about every fast food restaurant in North America, but they all have DQ to thank for that. Founders John Fremont McCullough, and his son Bradley partnered with ice cream shop owner Sherb Noble to create their masterpiece. They started selling it on August 4, 1938. In just two hours they managed to sell over 1600 servings of it.
2. The original Dairy Queen opened in 1940.
The founders spent two years after creating soft-serve ice cream developing their business plan. They opened the the first Dairy Queen in Jloiet, Illinois, in 1940.
3. The Blizzard was first introduced in 1985.
Dairy Queen decided to take their signature ice cream and mix in candy and other sweet treats like chocolate bars in order to create the Blizzard. They introduced them in 1985, and sold over 175 million orders in the first year.
4. The swirl on DQ ice cream cones is trademarked.
This iconic swirl on top of all Dairy Queen ice cream cones and other soft-serve treats is actually trademarked to DQ. It is actually supposed to resemble a Q for queen, and many employees actually refer to it as "the Q".
5. The soft-serve ice cream recipe is considered top secret.
When you joke about keeping something under "lock and key", it's usually a euphemism for keeping it safe. In the case of Dairy Queen, they mean it literally. The original soft-serve recipe is kept in a safety deposit box and only a few people have one of the keys.
6. Texas has more Dairy Queen restaurants than any other state.
Considering how hot it can get in Texas I guess this doesn't come as much of a surprise. The iconic franchise may have started in Illinois, but Texas is now the place that it calls home. There are currently over 600 locations in Texas alone.
7. Dairy Queen's largest location in the U.S. is still in Illinois.
Bloomington, Illinois boasts a massive DQ. It is over 5000 square feet, has seating for 140 people, a patio, and three fireplaces. Talk about grabbing an ice cream cone in style.
8. Dairy Queen has expanded to over 25 countries.
Saudi Arabia has the world's largest Dairy Queen, but DQ has become a worldwide phenomenon. They also have locations in countries including Egypt, Costa Rica, and Thailand.
9. The largest Blizzard ever made was 22 feet tall.
This particular world record food item was created on June 21, 2005, in Springfield, Massachusetts. It weighed an insane 8,224.84 pounds and stood over 22 feet tall. That's damn big ice cream treat.
10. No Doubt formed in a Diary Queen.
Eric Stefani and Greg Spence actually met while they were working at a Dairy Queen in the late 80s. They ended up recruiting the other members and became a wildly popular band.
What is your go-to treat when you head to your local Dairy Queen?