Campus Craves, a new student-owned ice cream and late-night snack shop, is bringing flavors like “This $&@! Just Got Serious” and “Munchie Madness” to Bloomington.
Co-owner and IU sophomore Hunter Haines described Campus Craves as non-traditional. He and Brayden Sammons, also a sophomore, are offering doughnut and cinnamon roll ice cream sandwiches, so it’s more than ice cream in a cup or cone.
The shop also serves snack foods like loaded Tater Tots, fried pickles, mozzarella sticks, buffalo chicken sticks and mac and cheese bites.
Campus Craves will have a soft opening Friday and grand opening Nov. 10 at 208 N. Walnut Street, near the Bluebird.
“We’re at a really good spot for the bars,” Haines said.
It will cater to a late night crowd, running noon to 11 p.m Sunday through Wednesday and noon until “late” Thursday through Saturday.
"Late” will probably be until around 3 a.m., Haines said.
Even with all the work to get the business open, Haines said he has been getting the best grades he’s ever gotten this year.
Haines and Sammons started working on the business when they were seniors at Warsaw Community High School.
“People have always genuinely loved ice cream,” Sammons said. “It’s one of the only products that can make someone's mood completely change from being upset to happy.”
Sammons came up with the idea for a shop and brought it to Haines, who really liked it.
“My love of ice cream started when I was little,” Haines said. “Everyday after elementary school, my grandma would pick me up and take me to go get ice cream.”
The two, who met in fifth grade, wrote a 24-page business plan once they decided to go for the idea.
“We would spend every single night adding to this plan,” Sammons said.
They worked on the plan for about four months. After they decided move forward with the idea, they asked people in their hometown for funding.
“Everything just fell in line,” he said.
A friend’s parents ended up being one of their biggest benefactors.
Their business plan was left on the table at their friend's house, and the parents happened to read it and liked the idea.
Haines and Sammons both said they credit a lot of their success to their high school teachers. Warsaw Community High School has a business learning program, so the two were taking business classes before they got to IU.
Finding a building was an issue for them. Sammons said many places were not comfortable letting 19-year-olds have the retail space. They thought they were going to have to change the idea to a food truck.
“We spent close to a year talking to commercial property management,” Sammons said.
Finally, the spot on Walnut Street opened up, and they got it.
Sammons said he hopes Campus Craves becomes well known and liked in Bloomington. He has even bigger plans after that. He said in the future, he hopes to have a Campus Craves franchise on every big university campus.
“We want to make sure that we build this to be not only the best ice cream shop in Bloomington, but also in the Indiana region,” Sammons said.
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