AURORA, Colo. — On Saturday, Howdy Homemade Ice Cream in Aurora will celebrate one year in business and one year of employing team members that owner Troy Knuckles calls his heroes.
“Our mission is all about creating jobs for amazing people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and we’re here one year later with almost the exact same crew that we started with,” Knuckles said.
October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month. Statistics from the U.S. Department of Labor show 40% of Americans ages 16 to 64 with a disability were employed in September 2023.
Howdy’s General Manager Kayle Knuckles said their 14 employees are the heart of the business.
“They’re the ones greeting you when you walk in the door. They’re the ones serving you, interacting with you,” he said.
Ben Kim, who has Down syndrome, has worked at Howdy Homemade Ice Cream since it opened.
“I love working with people one on one and I love greeting people and giving them excellent customer service,” Kim said.
Kim also said there’s no limit to how many samples customers can ask for.
Ben Levine, another master scooper, said Howdy provided him with his first job.
“I get tipped a lot,” he said.
The employees say working at Howdy is like being with family. In fact, some of the employees’ parents volunteer to make the ice cream. The shop is famous for unique flavors like Dr. Pepper chocolate chip.
The store will have special promotions for customers for its one-year anniversary on Oct. 21. Howdy Homemade Ice Cream is located at 6340 S. Parker Road in Aurora.
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