Monday, April 3, 2017


On the other side of the Interstate, I-275 that is, running parallel to Nebraska Avenue, is our “sister” avenue, Florida, which for some reason, is not nearly as colorful, or junky, or as full as miscreants as we here on Nebraska like to think, although the residents on Florida I'm sure would beg to differ. They do, however, have some pretty neat establishments over there, and while we can boast of our “3 Coins Diner” and our “Ella's”, they do have us beat with “Bo's Ice Cream”.

Distance from my house to Bo's. The route is I-275, which is the delineation between the two Avenues, which are as different as day and night. 

Bo's Ice Cream has been around since the Eisenhower Administration and it carries some of the finest ice cream anywhere; all of it home-made. When I lived over there on the “other side” I could actually walk to Bo's and order me up some of the BEST homemade pineapple ice cream with real chunks of fresh pineapple in it that I've ever had. It's probably a good thing I'm living over here off of Nebraska now, because, now, I have to take two buses to get my Bo's fix and I have a problem with my sugar and Bo's is certainly not the place to remedy that. Besides their simple homemade ice cream, they offer everything from ice cream floats, to upside-down banana splits and everything in between, and it's all good. Bosanko's favorite treat is the Hot Fudge Brownie Sundae; he makes the brownies himself!    

Kenny Bosanko hasn't changed the decor; preferring to keep it retro over the years. The patrons like it that way. 

The owner, Kenny Bosanko's father established Bo's in 1954, when the family moved to Tampa from Ohio. The building was already an ice cream stand in 1954, called Kreme King, but it struggled because the owner didn't keep regular hours, hanging signs that read “Now” or “Not Now”, so it took the Bosanko family time to turn the business around with regular business hours and it's been a going concern in the Bosanko family ever since.

Two big favorites; the soft swirl vanilla, dipped in butterscotch, and the Hot Fudge Brownie Sundae, with Kenny Bosankos' homemade Brownies. 

The place on the corner of Flora – the street where I used to live – and Florida Avenue didn't open a drive-thru until 2001 and didn't accept credit cards until 2004, 50 years after the opening of Bo's. Kenny is a last-millennial kinda guy and accepts that. He remembers the days when everyone could leave their doors and cars unlocked, and also remembers the crippling tide of drugs and thievery. That's pretty much gone now, and he has a lot of repeat business from police and firemen and says “There are a lot of radios around; we're pretty heavily armed”.     

Although this isn't the cheapest ice cream in town, it's certainly the best! A sampling of Bo's menus.

At any rate, this place will make any kid swoon, and as to how many days the establishment has ever been closed over its venerable career? Exactly two, and that was during the time in 2004, when Hurricane Charley cut the power to everything in Tampa. But, any trip to Tampa MUST include a trip to Bo's for some of the best ice cream to be found anywhere in the country!   

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