Dreamette Ice Cream Springfield expects May opening | Jax Daily Record | Jacksonville Daily Record

Dreamette Ice Cream Springfield is on its way.

Mari Van Soest and Jimmy Van Soest, the owners, stated that they expect to open the ice-cream shop in eight weeks.

The city is reviewing a permit request for First Coast Walls and Ceilings Inc., to build-out the shop at 1401 N. Main St., an old service station in Historic Springfield.

The site is located several blocks from Downtown.

Already, there are signs of progress.

Thompson Awning was granted a permit to install awnings above the windows on March 16.

The dreametteicecream.com site says the shop is coming to Springfield in the spring next to Fred Cotten’s Landmark BBQ. It is currently looking for employees.

Dreamette of Springfield Inc. president is Jimmy Van Soest

Dreamette Ice Cream Springfield could be open in eight weeks at 1401 N. Main St.

Van Soest, a Realtor with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices in the Avondale office said that the couple plans to invest approximately $100,000 in the project.

It will offer walk-up services with outdoor standing tables and a counter in its breezeway. There is no seating.

“We drove around the city trying to get a feel for where a Dreamette would be appropriate,”Mari Van Soest, a nurse of 33 years, said:

“Springfield was first on our list,”She said. “It was the oldest part of town”

According to Van Soests the Springfield area continues attracts interest.

“We want to be a part of improving Main Street and providing more for the residents there and helping to bring it back to life.”

The Van Soests plan to host events that support schools, nonprofits, and engage the community.

“We want to be an experience other than eating a cone of ice cream,”Mari Van Soest spoke.

“We really feel like it’s a ministry for us because we want to invest in the community. We want to do outreaches and spirit nights for the schools.”

Jimmy Van Soest was a car dealer general manager in Gainesville for over three decades.

According to the building permit application, the 1,900-square foot, 92-year old building will be renovated at a cost of $60,000.

Springfield, established in 1869 and the city’s oldest neighborhood, has been adding restaurants, retail stores and breweries on the main corridor leading north from Downtown.

According to city property records the structure at 1401 N. Main St. was built in 1930.

Michael Trautmann, investor, purchased the property in 1999.

He stated that it was originally built as a Standard Oil service center and still has zoning permission to be used for automotive purposes.

The structure is masonry on structural block. Standard Oil had fully remedied the property, he said.

It has had previous tenants such as car stereo installation, window tinting, and political campaign offices. The last tenant was a custom-made motorcycle design company.

Andy Zarka, a Springfield resident and restaurateur, decided against opening a restaurant at the building in September 2019. Marlo Zarka, his spouse, had envisioned leasing the structure and converting it into Springfield United. This soft-serve icecream shop would also sell beer or wine.

Zarka, owner of European Street Cafes decided against the project as the costs exceeded her expectations.

RAM Architecture of Jacksonville was the contractor for the Dreamette Ice Cream Springfield Renovation. Legacy Engineering Inc  of Jacksonville reviewed the plans for code compliance.

The San Marco Dreamette also has plans for a spring opening.

The permit was issued March 11 by the city for the San Marco Dreamette located at San Marco, 1905 Hendricks Ave.

C.E.M. Builders Inc., Jacksonville is the contractor on the $35,000 project.

According to the SanMarcoDreamette Facebook Page, Brian Roes and Deanne Roses plan to open San Marco Dreamette in March.

In Murray Hill, near Riverside, the original Dreamette ice cream shop was opened in 1948. Johnny Nettles, the current owner, purchased it in 2008.

He has licensed other locations throughout the years.

Nettles stated that he has previously instructed the operators on how to prepare the menu items and run the restaurants.

He stated that most licensed locations are walk ups with some outside seating. Some are walk ins, but not with interior seats.

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