LEMARS, Iowa- The Wells Dairy Company has opened a made-over Visitor Center and Ice Cream Parlor in downtown LeMars.
The new $3 million dollar center tells the Wells story growing from a family business delivering milk, into what is now the second largest dairy products company in the United States. Interactive exhibits show how ice cream is made, and a small theater shows a movie with the company story.
"Our goal from the beginning was to create a space where people can immerse themselves in the history of Wells and ice cream, and to make this space, and the community a travel destination,” said Wells President and CEO Mike Wells, in a news release. “I think we’ve delivered on that goal, and I’m excited to unveil the final product after nearly a year of construction.”
During a news conference and tour on Thursday Adam Baumgartner told reporters it was the goal to make this visitors center the largest tourist attraction after the Iowa State Fair. He acknowledged it was a big goal, and they’ve got a way to go to attain that.
The center also has a full ice cream shop with a lot of the company flavors on hand. They also serve “extreme ice cream creations” for those who want the full experience.
The new center also offers a public meeting space, and an outdoor rooftop area for enjoying ice cream.
The formal opening of the Wells Visitor Center and Ice Cream Shop will take place June 12th, at 11 am. Governor Kim Reynolds is expected to be on hand for the event. That is also the first day of “Ice Cream Days,” the annual community celebration in LeMars.
The Visitor Center and Ice Cream shop will hold a soft opening starting Saturday.