Sunday Is National Ice Cream Day. Here’s the Scoop on Where to Get Free Ice Cream
Technically, it’s not National Ice Cream Day — Ronald Reagan declared July 15, 1984, as such in an official presidential proclamation (in which he also called ice cream “a nutritious and wholesome food”: a presidential decree I’m happy to use each time I justify my own indulgence in this sweet treat).
But restaurants and stores love to run promotions for national food days (see: National Donut Day, National Pretzel Day and National Cookie Day), so the third Sunday of July has since been adopted as National Ice Cream Day.
10 Cool Freebies and Deals for National Ice Cream Day 2018
This year, National Ice Cream Day falls on Sunday, July 15, and we’ve got the scoop (get it?) on the best places to get deals and freebies.
Baskin-Robbins is celebrating National Ice Cream Day with the launch of Freak Shakes, which come in three different varieties and are available at participating stores through the end of the month.
And If you download the Baskin-Robbins app on National Ice Cream Day, you’ll receive exclusive coupons, such as BOGO cones, BOGO ice cream sundaes and $2 off a medium milkshake. You’ll also receive a free regular scoop just for downloading the app. And if you order Baskin-Robbins through DoorDash on July 15, you’ll receive a free single scoop with an order of $10 or more.
They’re sweetening the deal on July 31, when all regular and kid-sized scoops will be $1.50 as part of their ongoing Celebrate 31 promotion.
2. Ben & Jerry’s
Ben & Jerry’s already had its own Free Cone Day in April, and so far no plans have been released for Sunday. However, Whole Foods has partnered with both Ben & Jerry’s and Talenti to offer a two-for-$6 deal on both dairy and nondairy pints.
The offer is available for three days starting July 15, and if you’re an Amazon Prime member, then you’ll receive an extra 10% off. If you buy four or more pints, you’ll receive an additional $10 credit to spend on Amazon’s Prime Day (which will be held July 16 and 17).
Carvel is offering buy-one-get-one cups or cones (soft serve only) on July 15 – some locations even feature different flavors, such as Reese’s, Oreo cookie, and strawberry.
And if you don’t get enough of an ice cream fix on Sunday, then head back to Carvel on Wednesday for BOGO sundaes.
4. Cold Stone Creamery
Join the My Cold Stone rewards program and you’ll qualify for a buy-one-get-one deal for their ice cream “creations”.
Cold Stone is also celebrating its 30th anniversary and its fourth year of Random Acts of Cold Stone – an event in which a team travels around the country to give away free ice cream. Be sure to follow their Facebook page to see where they’re heading next!
5. Dairy Queen
The chain is being hush on any nationwide deals for National Ice Cream Day, as most franchises are independently owned and operated. But some locations have offered National Ice Cream Day promos of their own in the past, so be sure to check if your local Dairy Queen is getting in on the fun.
And if you want a sure deal, sign up for the Blizzard Club and you’ll receive a coupon for BOGO Blizzards within 24 hours, plus five more BOGO coupons throughout the rest of the year.
6. Dippin’ Dots
Visit a participating Dippin’ Dots store or shopping center location on July 15 and get a free mini cup. The offer will only be available during a two-hour window, so be sure to call your nearest location to find out when it will be participating.
Dippin’ Dots is also celebrating its 30th anniversary, so you’ll also have a chance to win some prizes!
7. Monkey Joe’s
This Sunday, the giant inflatable play center is hosting a special customer appreciation event that will include free ice cream, along with prizes and giveaways throughout the day.
No word yet on whether Sonic Drive-In locations will have a special promotion for National Ice Cream Day, but they are currently running a ½-Price After 8pm deal on shakes, floats and ice cream slushes. So if you find yourself still yearning for more after a day of freebie grabbing, you can always finish up here.
This year is Yogurtland’s first National Ice Cream Day celebration, and they’re offering a BOGO deal on five of their homemade ice cream flavors, including rich chocolate, creamy vanilla, chocolate malt ball with Whoppers, butter pecan light ice cream and Oreo cookies and cream.
The offer is available at all U.S. locations on July 15 from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.
10. Your Pie
While its name might not mention it, Your Pie also serves gelato and will give away free scoops on Sunday with no strings attached. Look for locations across 20 states in the U.S.
Bonus: PetSmart PetsHotel
Don’t forget your four-legged friends! PetSmart PetsHotel locations across the country will be offering free four-ounce servings of pup-safe ice cream all weekend long.
And if you live in New York City, Washington D.C. or San Diego, then plan to bring your doggos to the dog park to hunt for the Wag! ice cream cart dishing out free dog-friendly treats!
Kelly Gurnett is a freelance blogger, writer and editor who runs the blog Cordelia Calls It Quits, where she documents her attempts to rid her life of the things that don’t matter and focus more on the things that do. Follow her on Twitter @CordeliaCallsIt.
Jessica Gray is an editorial assistant at The Penny Hoarder. She updated this post for National Ice Cream Day 2018.