Who can resist an ice cream, even in winter? Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream is an American ice cream company with the principal factory in Waterbury Vermont. Receive a free sample of their best after seeing how it’s made.
Its factory tour is one of Vermont’s most popular tourist attractions. The tour begins with a short video about its history and company’s founders. A bird’s eye view of the production room demonstrates their manufacturing process of ice cream. The tour ends with an ice cream sample of a new flavor with more ice cream to purchase in their gift shop.
Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield founded this premium ice cream brand in 1978. Ben & Jerry’s produce ice cream, sorbet, frozen yogurt and ice cream novelty products. The company history is one of the great American dream. It begins by two childhood friends who upon college graduation decided on a unique career direction.
In 1977 they completed an ice cream making correspondence course offered by Pennsylvania State University’s Creamery. In May 1978 their $12,000 investment opened an ice cream parlor in a renovated gas station in downtown Burlington VT. In 1980 operations were expanded in larger quarters with ice cream packed in pints.
The factory is open year round. Manufacturing is scheduled five days a week from Monday through Friday, closed on major holidays. Guided tours are conducted every 30 minutes the last daily tour 1 hour before closing.
November through June
10:00 AM – 6:00 PM
June though August
9:00 AM – 9:00 PM
August through October
9:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Adults – $4
Seniors – $3
Kids 12 and younger – free
1281 Waterbury Stowe Road
Ben & Jerry’s winter festival is Saturday March 1, from 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM offering free tours all day. They give free ice cream cones for moms on May 11, 2014, and free cones for dads on June 15.
Waterbury is a town of 5,064 population 24 miles northwest of Montpelier. It is 28 miles east of Burlington and 11 miles south of Stowe. Nearby Waterbury is Mt. Mansfield, the highest peak in the state. Montpelier is the state capital, a center for insurance and granite quarrying industries with a population of 8,035. Stowe is a town of 4,314 population with New England’s finest downhill ski runs.
Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream is a 338 mile drive of 6:15 hours from Rochester NY. Drive I-90 east to Albany then north on US 87 past Glen Falls exit to route 4 east. Continue route 4 east across Vermont to US 89 before the Vermont border. Drive north on US 89 past Montpelier to Waterbury. Exit from US 89 on exit 10, 1-mile north on route 100 follow signs to Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream.
Here’s what one visitor thought of the tour.
“The facility is bright and bubbly and the kids loved it!”