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Teen offering a little nostalgia with this cool summer business

'Now the kids are getting to know what the bells mean and I see them running in their house to ask for money'

If the sound of ringing bike bells on a hot summer's day has you reaching for change to cool off with a frozen treat, you're in luck.

A young Timmins entrepreneur is bringing back the joy of Dickie Dee's for a new generation.

Brain Freeze, a mobile ice cream cart, is Julia Lemire's summer business. 

Hot summer nights, the 19-year-old is cruising around Timmins streets on the former Dickie Dee's bike she bought and spruced up over the winter. The ringing bells attract young and old to buy Drumsticks, popsicles, Mr. Freeze, fudgsicles and other frozen treats.

“A lot of people say ‘this is bringing back memories, I had this as a kid’, I hear it every time, every time I get a customer,” she said.

A new generation is learning about the excitement.

"Now the kids are getting to know what the bells mean and I see them running in their house to ask for money,” she said.

So far, she's mostly been going around the Melrose area, but she said there are ways to get other places.

“I’m going to try and go everywhere this summer,” she said. 

To find out where she'll be offering ice cream treats, follow Brain Freeze on Facebook or Instagram

Lemire took a year off after graduating from École secondaire catholique Thériault last year and is planning to study civil engineering at the University of Ottawa. The cart will likely be in business until the end of August when she heads to school.

The motivation to start her own business is rooted at home.

“My dad always encouraged me to start a business and one day he saw this on Kijiji and he was like ‘I had this as a kid and everyone ran after it, it was the highlight of the summer.’ So I thought it would be cool to bring it back and it’s really nostalgic for everyone,” she said.

The name came from a brainstorm of words that go with ice cream. She had a vision for the logo — a frozen brain perched on top of a popsicle — and created it herself. For funding, she received a summer company grant from the Timmins Economic Development Corporation.

She hopes to offer Brain Freeze for at least a couple of summers.

Now that she's had a taste of what it's like to be an entrepreneur, Lemire thinks she's a good boss.

“I don’t think I’ll want to work for anyone in the future now, now that I know how it is to work for myself,” she said


Maija Hoggett

About the Author: Maija Hoggett

Maija Hoggett is an experienced journalist who covers Timmins and area
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