Wednesday is one of Rita’s most highly anticipated days of the year—the first day of spring, which means free Italian ice for all.
The Rita’s in Severna Park will give away seven-ounce cups of Italian Ice all day Wednesday—an endeavor owner Rob Marcus says takes several days to prepare for.
“It’s very hectic and everybody is on the schedule,” Marcus said. “I start telling the kids three weeks prior not to make any plans. Even with a full staff it is non-stop. We start making the ice the day before so we are constantly making the ice Tuesday and all day Wednesday just to keep up."
Last year during the promotion, the Rita’s chain gave away more than a million cups of ice. The Severna Park location handed out about 3,300 servings.
While the day itself is a marathon for Marcus and his staff, he says he enjoys the outing and the opportunity it brings to his stand.
“I do look forward to it because a lot of people think that's our opening day,” Marcus said. “Even after seven years I still get people who are surprised to learn I opened in February. It is a great way to get people out and know that we are open.”
This year, Rita’s in Severna Park is doing more than giving away free ice. Those who register as attending the event on Facebook will be eligible for a $25 gift card.
Marcus said those looking to avoid a long line should try and come before 2 p.m. After school lets out the lines fill the parking lots.
“After school it’s a mob scene and pretty wild,” Marcus said. “I block off the parking lot so no body gets hurt, but it is quite a spectacle.”
The Rita’s in Severna Park is located at 567 Baltimore Annapolis Blvd. To join the Facebook event, click here.