I scream, you scream – Presbyterians love their ice cream

Members from Lake Wateree Presbyterian Church sit down to some cold ice cream and warm fellowship Aug. 18.

With the terrible heat that we have experienced this summer, many thoughts often turn to the savory taste of old fashioned ice cream. Whether it be in a bowl with toppings, in a cone, as a malt or mixed with root beer or coke as a float, most people like ice cream. Because of this the Lake Wateree Presbyterian Church at the corner of Old Windmill Road and River Road Aug. 18 held an ice cream social that was open to the public.

National Ice Cream month was actually the month of July, but ice cream is enjoyed all year around. Ice cream is a frozen dessert, similar to custard, yogurt and sorbet. Adding fruit to it gives us hundreds of flavors to choose from. There is some controversy as to where this dessert originated. Some say China, some believe Europe and others think Mesopotamia. In any case, the earliest known time for it to be served was by Nero in the first century A.D. when he enjoyed an ice cream-like dessert. His servants brought fresh snow from the mountains and he topped it with fruit. Charles I of England served this dessert at his royal table dating back to 1649. An actual recipe for ice cream first appeared in 1718 and it was served at the inaugural balls of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and James and Dolly Madison. The cone came into use in 1894 and soon after the cone came the birth of the sundae. The United States production of ice cream is more than two billion gallons, the favorite being vanilla and then chocolate, Neapolitan, strawberry and cookies ‘n cream. This year the makers of ice cream have even come out with an avocado flavor and a sweet corn flavor. This one actually has kernels of corn in it. No thanks, I do not want vegetables in my ice cream and my avocado belongs in my salad, in my taco and on my toast.

We all know that when we enjoy ice cream we add a few calories to our diet (267 in one cup) but it is still worth it. Did you know that if you eat ice cream right out of the carton, standing up at the sink, that it is not as many calories? It is when you put it in a bowl and sit at the table that you pack on a few pounds. At least that is what I try to convince my husband of each night. But calories or not, the Presbyterian Church members and friends got together recently to eat ice cream together and enjoy sharing stories and laughter. A few hymns and camp-fire type songs were sung also. When this church first started holding ice cream socials many years ago, they used only the hand cranked makers and everyone took turns with the churning. As the congregation grew older, they tired of this and soon went to the ice cream purchased from the store. But one couple brought fresh peach ice cream made in the hand churner and it was a big hit. There were a total of 10 different ice creams and several syrups, whipped cream and chopped nuts. Of course desserts of brownies, cookies and tarts accompanied the ice cream sundaes made by the Lake Wateree folks.

It has been a year or so since this church held an ice cream social but they have had other get-togethers to enjoy fellowship with their Christian friends. This small church, once called The Chapel because of its appearance – wood siding and built in the woods as it is – was founded in the year 1989 to serve people of the lake area. It is a Presbyterian Church, USA that welcomes visitors. With an early morning worship service at 9 a.m. it gives the lake residents the rest of the day to enjoy being out on the water. The congregation is active in litter pickup, sponsorship of a children’s cottage at Thornwell Children’s Home, contributes food to the Food Bank and many of the members participate in missionary work in foreign countries and participate in Habitat for Humanity. In the past this active congregation enjoyed Halloween parties, hayrides, pontoon boat picnics, trips to Myrtle Beach at Christmas and fish fries, to name a few. Being smaller in number now, they currently celebrate Valentine’s Day with a dinner at the Windmill restaurant, several breakfasts throughout the year and a Christmas dinner and a Christmas eve celebration. The Elders serve communion on the first Sunday of each month. The church also has a lovely, well-kept cemetery on the adjoining lot.

If you missed this year’s ‘open to the public’ ice cream social, make a note for next year. Since it is a favorite with this congregation, I feel sure the Lake Wateree Presbyterian Church will be holding another one at this same time next year.