What do the Burning Man Festival, a Raygun Gothic Rocketship and Little Man Ice Cream have in common? The three combine to create Rocket Ice Cream at Hangar 2 next to the Lowry Beer Garden. “We wanted to bring a fun, iconic ice cream store to Lowry,” says Joe Vostrejs, Hangar 2 developer and partner at Larimer Associates.
“When I began considering ideas with a space and aircraft theme in mind, it occurred to me that I wanted a version of the rockets that fueled my childhood imagination,” Vostrejs explains. Googling cartoon images of 1930s and ’40s rocket ships became a project for Vostrejs until he discovered that what he was searching for actually existed—and was for sale. He and partner Jim Hartman, owner and manager of Hartman Ely Investments LLC, knew “it was perfect.”
The Raygun Gothic Rocketship was originally created for the 2009 Burning Man Festival, an experiment in community and art in the Nevada desert attended annually by over 60,000 people. The sculpture, by artist David Schulman of the Five Ton Crane artist cooperative in San Francisco, subsequently toured the U.S. and Canada as a traveling art exhibit. It will now make its permanent home in Lowry.
A self-described childhood sci-fi junkie, Vostrejs says the rocket is a “dream come true.” Standing
atop an 11-foot-tall inverted cone-shaped glass kiosk, the entire structure stands 51 total vertical feet high with a “launch pad feel.” A plaza with chairs and umbrellas surrounds the shop to create an outdoor dining area. “The rocket is so appropriate for the Hangar 2 location in Lowry,” says Vostrejs. It ignites imagination and illustrates the connections between air and space travel, exploration and adventure.”
Of course, there will be lots of ice cream. Favorite flavors of Little Man Ice Cream will be served alongside a rotation of special flavors available only at Rocket Ice Cream. The shop will be open almost year-round, weather permitting.
It is Vostrejs’ hope that the rocket will become an iconic Lowry landmark. “Neighborhoods become defined by what you see there,” he says. “The rocket ship pays homage to the former Lowry Air Force Base and will attract attention to the area.”
To learn more about Rocket Ice Cream, visit their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/RocketIceCream/.