Sparky always wanted a place for pets and their fellow humans to grab a tasty frozen treat together. His dreams turned reality in early June, as Sparky’s Sweet Treats opened its doors to the public and pups.
Located at the Waldorf plaza in Key Largo next to Subway, 99.6, oceanside, Sparky’s Sweet Treats is bringing kids and parents’ ice cream concoction imaginations to life. Tasty treats are available to dogs in the way of cookies and ice cream, which is coming soon.
For those who don’t know Sparky, he’s a chihuahua mix who was adopted by Dessiree Bennett, human owner of the ice cream shop, and her family. Rescued in Miami, he serves as an emotional support dog for Bennett’s son while in college. He’s also the inspiration behind the ice cream shop, which rebranded from Sub Zero Nitrogen Ice Cream.
“He (Sparky) wants a place where humans and pets can have really delicious treats,” Bennett said. “We have treats for our pet friends, we have a little bed in the corner of the shop and a place for water and food.”
Sparky’s menu features an array of frozen treat options that’s sure to satisfy the sweet tooth of people (there’s no going wrong with peanut butter ice cream with Reese’s cups and pieces. And top that with some hot fudge).
Running the ice cream is Rachel Machado, longtime Keys resident and 2020 graduate of Coral Shores. She’ll be attending the University of South Florida in the fall and Florida State University in the spring to study mechanical engineering and business.
“The most popular are chocolate with chocolate on top, peanut butter ice cream loaded with peanut butter,” she said. “Cotton candy or bubble gum tends to be the top seller for kids. What goes inside their ice cream is completely up to them. We really appeal to those sweet tooths.”
The ice-cream-making process is a rather interesting one at Sparky’s Sweet Treats, Bennett said.
“We first take cream or whatever base you choose — we even have vegan ice cream. All of our ice cream is gluten free,” she said. “You put in whatever you want between flavors and then you put in some mix-ins like Oreos or Reeses Cups.”
From there, the ice cream concoction is transformed into a tasty frozen delight using liquid nitrogen. Bennett said the tank that’s utilized to make the nitrogen ice cream is set at -321 degrees.
“We make the ice cream right in front of you,” she said.
Sparky’s Sweet Treats also offers Edy’s scooped ice cream, Dippin Dots, old-fashioned candies like Pop Rocks, soda and more. Enjoy the frozen treat inside an invigorating, kid-friendly atmosphere containing pool tables, games and Wifi. As the pups, a doggy ice cream is in the making and will out soon (Bennett says it could be early August).
“I wanted something that has a homemade feeling, so we’re creating our own,” she said.
All in all, Bennett said Sparky’s idea of a place with delicious frozen delight and tasty treats has come true. Every now and then, he’ll make an appearance to ensure everything is running smoothly.
“We’re his human friend. We’re his human helpers,” Bennett said.
Sparky’s Sweet Treats is open from 2 to 10 p.m. on weekdays and noon to 10 p.m. on weekends. For more information, visit Sparky’s Sweet Treats’ Facebook.