Cream City History
Cream City originally opened in the late 1890s as Consumer City in the same proximity as it is now. Consumer City made milk and other dairy products which were shipped to the north by covered wagon. The Whitaker family owned the dairy manufacturing business, and through its evolution the name changed to Cream City. In 1948, the building that housed Cream City at that time burned down. A new building was constructed and completed in 1950 and is the same building which stands today.
At the time of the new construction, a 3-ton neon sign was erected on top of the building proving to be a tourist attraction along Highway 70. The neon sign has been featured in several magazines and was named one of the top 100 neon signs in the country by American Road Magazine. The old 1930s Cream City Ice Cream "Take some home today" sign that was originally displayed on the outside of the building still proudly hangs inside the store today.
In 1986, a prominent ice cream company purchased Cream City Ice Cream to shut it down as its production became a major competitor. After this, the existing building housed many other businesses including a café, an accounting office, a T-shirt shop, and even living quarters. However, the 3-ton sign and its neon magnetism attracted passer-bys to mainly ice cream.
The structure became what it was meant to be again in 2011 when Cream City Ice Cream and Coffee House opened the doors to the public once again as an ice cream shop. The downtown area has officially been titled the "Cream City Historic District" as displayed by the city of Cookeville on designated signage. The atmosphere provides some modern ice cream design but holds true to its roots with glimpses of photos and signage from its heritage of ice cream soda fountains of yesteryears. The mixture of ornament provides just the right setting for young kids, an older generation, and all those in between to enjoy ice cream, milkshakes, malts, coffee, frappes, smoothies and so much more!