Ever wonder when the glorious tradition of Ice Cream Socials originated? The alleged first appearance of ice cream parties was during the reign of England’s King Charles II. During the late 1600’s, ice cream was an expensive commodity that was only served to the king’s table at the royal feast. Due to the lack of resources available to make the delicious treat, ice cream was only enjoyed by members of the upper classes until the late 1700’s/early 1800’s.
The earliest recorded American Ice Cream Party dates back to 1744 when Maryland Governor Thomas Bladen served ice cream at a dinner party for the first time in American history. Adding to the list of ice-cream loving politicians, Thomas Jefferson became the first President to serve ice cream at the White House in 1802.
Eventually, Ice Cream Socials became a delicious phenomenon for organizations such as schools and churches. In the late 1860’s, the South Dakota Ladies’ Sewing Society hosted a social gathering filled with ice cream and cake. Other organizations followed suit and soon ice cream parties were one of the most popular options.
Ice Cream Socials were initially designed to cater large parties such as community gatherings, theme parties and fundraising events. In present day, ice cream socials remain an excellent treat for event attendees of all ages. The main difference between the past and current ice cream parties is there any more ice cream options available now, making the universal dessert affordable to almost all consumers.