DALLAS - Workers at a new ice cream shop in Oak Cliff say they are working to strengthen the community one scoop at a time.
Steve & Cammy’s has only been opened for a few days. Customers entering the ice cream shop pause to take in the bright décor, as they are greeted by friendly staff. The atmosphere, some say, is an anomaly in this neighborhood. It is a welcoming environment, in an area that could use a boost.
Some neighbors along the 2800 block of Cedar Crest say the area is known for loitering, prostitution, and drugs. Steve and Camille Jones, the owners of Steve and Cammy’s, know the community’s reputation. It was part of the driving force to open a business in that area.
”We believe that there are good people in bad areas,” Camille Jones said. “I’m actually one of them.”
The Jones family says the vision for opening an ice cream shop in the Cedar Crest Shopping center came while attending church in the area.
Camille said, ”We just started taking a notice of the neighborhood, and we were like, 'Wow, why is it always certain parts of town that look like this?'”
Where some see neglect, the young entrepreneurs say they saw an opportunity. Steven Jones said they wanted to be part of turning things around in the neighborhood. They decided to do it with something everyone loves.
"I feel like ice cream is something that brings different people together,” Steven said. “Young people, old people. Kids. Everybody likes ice cream.”
The couple says it was conscious about every detail in Steve & Cammy’s. They say the bright, polished, look inside the shop, coupled with impressive prices, was key.
"We are in a low income area.” Camille explained. “We wanted to be able to make something nice, upscale, but make the prices affordable for the residents.”
There is a wide variety of ice cream options, including a few vegan flavors. There are homemade pound cakes. A family pecan candy recipe is also drawing customers.
"I think that’s great. That’s why I’m here. I wanted to support the business and get some other businesses opening up in the area," Mariano Rios said.
Steve & Cammy’s motto is: Strengthening Communities One Scoop at a Time.
“The idea is to have a trickle-down effect,” Camille explained. “We’re trail-blazing. So, hopefully we can be an example to others that it can be done.”
The owners of the ice cream shop believe the time is tasty for other entrepreneurs to become economic change agents in similar communities across Southern Dallas.
Steve & Cammy’s is located at 2839 Cedar Crest Blvd suite 100, Dallas, TX 75203. The ice cream shop is open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday through Friday.
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