TUSCUMBIA – The Shoals Chamber of Commerce welcomed a new member to the organization, Miami Ice. Chamber Ambassadors, Mayor Billy Shoemaker, and a number of well-wishers were on hand to cut the ribbon on the new store.
This is a prepared statement from Scott Whittle, of Miami Ice:
“The Coolest Drink in Town” was founded in 1987 by the Whittle family
and opened it’s first location in Florence in May 1987. J. Scott Whittle, son of Jim
Whittle and the late Jan Whittle lived in Tuscumbia with his two sisters Tara and Jillian.
Scott was an entrepreneur as early as his freshman year at Deshler High School when he
opened his first business (J&S Sports Cards) in downtown Tuscumbia. J&S Sports Cards
was a sports memorabilia shop specializing in baseball cards which were ever popular
and a huge fad in the late 80s and early 90s.
Scott and his father Jim later expanded the business and relocated into the mall in Muscle
Shoals formerly known as Southgate Mall.
I was only a year after Scott’s baseball card shop had opened when he and his family
opened Miami Shaved Ice in Florence. Scott’s mother Jan owned and operated Miami Ice
full-time for many years up until she lost her long battle with breast cancer in January
2003. Both of Scott’s sisters each owned and operated Miami Ice at one point or another
as well as his father Jim for several years after Jan died.
It wasn’t until May of 2008 when Scott, now living in Orlando, Florida and the President/
CEO of Royal Premier Vacations Inc. as well as the President and top share holder of
Grand Incentives Inc. and Grand Getaways Vacation (the worlds largest travel club with
over 7 million members and subscribers) that he relocated back to North Alabama to the
place where he first started as a young, enthusiastic businessman to build on the Miami
Ice name started some 20 years prior.
Scott soon franchised the business and added locations in Florida as well as it’s two
newest locations in Dallas, Texas and Tuscumbia, Alabama.
“My goal is to have 50 stores by the time I turn 50, Whittle says. With plans to open a
location caddy-corner to Bryant Denny Stadium near the University of Alabama campus
this Fall as well as a Huntsville location the following Spring, his goal is steadfastly
becoming a reality. I’m happy with how much the business has grown and extremely
thankful for the countless hours and blood, sweat and tears my mom put into the Miami
Ice name. Mom never met a stranger and she treated our customers like gold! Oftentimes remembering and preparing their drink of choice the minute they pulled up
to the shop!” Whittle added, “I’m sure she would be proud of how much the business has
grown, but without the foundation she built some years back, none of this would be possible today.”
Miami Ice has over 150 different flavors and combinations available ranging from the
traditional Sno-Cream shaved ice to some of the popular celebrity signature flavors like
the “Charlie Sheen”, “Justin Beiber”, “Lady Gaga”, “Paris Hilton” and many others. Mi
ami Ice has signature flavors named after many local area well-knowns such as Helen
Keller, Gary Nichols and W.C.
Handy, sports stars like Stewart Cink and Josh Willingham as well as coaches from UNA
(Bobby Wallace, Bobby Champagne and Terry Fowler) and Alabama (Nick Saban). You
can also order a Tim Tebow or a Michael Jackson. “There’s something for everyone of all
ages on our menu”, says Whittle. Kids can associate with the names they know and recognize from TV and movies like the “SpongeBob”, “Thomas the Train”, “Spiderman”
and so many more that I believe they crave the drinks more as a result.”
The idea to franchise the business name and menu came after long contemplation on
whether to keep the business a local icon or branch out across the globe. “Anyone with
$40,000 and enough time to dedicate to it can open a shaved ice business and call it anything they want, but after 25 years in business and making close to 1 million shaved ice drinks in North Alabama alone, the name Miami Ice has truly become “The Coolest
Drink in Town”.
For franchise information you can email firstname.lastname@example.org.