TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – There’s nothing quite like stopping by a neighborhood ice cream shop. Everyone loves indulging in a sweet treat.
Just ask Matthew McKean.
He knows firsthand just how delicious it is. The Tampa native was excited when he opened The Revolution Ice Cream Company along North Florida Avenue in Seminole Heights a year ago.
So were his customers.
In fact, this grassroots business, with its quirky decor and funky flavors, is so popular, that profits have doubled within the last year.
Residents love it.
But, can they save it?
Right now, no one is getting out as much. The nightly routine within this community has been altered drastically. Those who typically enjoy spending time at their local ice cream haven are making other plans.
Many are not leaving their homes.
It is this fear and anxiety that left the once-thriving Revolution Ice Cream with sluggish sales.
This beloved business is taking a hit financially amidst the hunt for a possible serial killer.
They aren’t the only ones. Many local businesses are suffering, and the owners are heartbroken over the recent loss of life.
After three innocent people were gunned down, just blocks apart in a ten day period, residents were shattered and shocked.
Who would do this? And, why?
Then, there’s the bigger question – when will the killer strike again?
That uncertainty has left folks in fear and on edge. Matthew understands why his customer base, which is usually big, is dwindling.
He, too, is worried.
“Especially on the weekends. I’m scared to open the back door, and somebody’s going to have a gun and point it at me,” Matthew told News Channel 8.
One thing is for sure, this community is not giving up or backing down in any way. In fact, those who call this community home are trying to be brave.
Stephanie Anello and her husband have lived in this area for 20 years. They cherish the afternoons at Revolution Ice Cream with their son, Augie.
For these parents, this is their safe place, their world and their future. This is where they are happiest, raising their son.
“We’ve been talking about how we do need to support our local businesses, so they don’t disappear. It is what holds all of this to this community.”
So, for now, Matthew’s ice cream shop is open for business.
He is hoping that neighbors will indulge in his frozen concoctions, keeping tradition and history alive.
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