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Yarnell's celebrates reopening

An 80 year Arkansas tradition, gone for 8 months, is back. Yarnell's ice cream based in Searcy is coming back to store shelves next week.
Celebating the re-opening of Yarnell's at the State Capital (David Goins, FOX16)
Celebating the re-opening of Yarnell's at the State Capital (David Goins, FOX16)
LITTLE ROCK, AR - An 80 year Arkansas tradition, gone for 8 months, is back. Yarnell's ice cream based in Searcy is coming back to store shelves next week.

Searcy based Yarnell's ice cream is scooping again. Arkansas' 1st citizen, Governor Mike Beebe enjoyed the first scoop from carton number one of homemade vanilla.

Today's celebration in the state capitol is the polar opposite to June 30th of last year, with the sudden shutdown of the ice cream plant.

Danny Barnes of Bald Knob was a seven year veteran of Yarnell's.

"You wake up in the morning and go to work and find out you don't have a job," Barnes recalls.

On Thursday he was scooping ice cream again, one of 16 former employees back at work.

“We’ve been working some long days, six days a week getting everything ready, it's paid off," Barnes says.

The re-launch of Yarnell’s comes with new packaging and a carton that will hold an additional 8 ounces of ice cream.

Right now they're starting with nine ice cream flavors, including butter pecan, cookies & cream, death by chocolate, homemade chocolate, vanilla & strawberry, real vanilla, Ozark black walnut and rocky road.

Chicago-based Schulze & Burch Biscuit Company purchased Yarnell’s assets, plant and recipe in a bankruptcy auction last November.

CEO Kevin Boyle told reporters on Thursday they are pleased to bring the product back to store shelves.

"It's exceeded all of our expectations,” Boyle says. “I had no idea how passionate Arkansans are about this brand. It was shocking, in a great way."

The capitol rotunda turned into an ice cream social for capitol employees and members of the public after the announcement.

"Absolutely wonderful, it's great to see an Arkansas company comeback so well," one Yarnell’s fan told FOX16 News.

You'll also be able to find Yarnell's yogurt, and low-fat varieties starting next week.

Yogurt flavors include blueberries ‘n cream, chocolate, peaches ‘n cream, strawberry and vanilla.

Guilt-free ice cream flavors include butter pecan, chocolate and vanilla.

Yarnell's will be sold at Walmart and Kroger stores throughout the state, as well as some stores in Southern Missouri, Northern Mississippi and the Tulsa, Oklahoma market.
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