Moo & Lou Frozen Treats has enjoyed success as a food-truck business, and the owners are now ready to settle into a permanent abode in their hometown of Lawrence.
Paula Strauss co-owns the business with her family, David Strauss and Lacy “Lou” Ross. She said the business started through their nonprofit organization, Maddie Smiles Random Acts of Kindness. They founded that organization in honor of their daughter, Maddie “Moo,” who died at age 19 from complications of gallbladder surgery.
“Every year on Maddie’s Angelversary, we spend our day doing acts of kindness to honor her,” Paula Strauss said. “We pass out flowers with kindness notes and we do a “Kindness Tour” with frozen treats. We started off hiring treat vendors to come to all of the fire stations in Lawrence, the Government Center and Lawrence Police Department to pass out free treats to our local heroes and government staff. David came up with a brilliant idea of starting our own shaved ice business due to it getting too expensive to purchase treats, and fewer people willing to donate their treats.”
That’s when they bought a food truck and created Moo & Lou Frozen Treats and More. They take the food truck to schools, festivals and concerts. A percentage of profits from the business goes into their Maddie Smiles nonprofit.
The new storefront at 5645 N. Post Rd. will be their first permanent location. Strauss said it was an easy choice to pick a spot in Lawrence.
“Lawrence is our home,” she said. “I’ve lived in Lawrence practically my whole life and Maddie “Moo” and Lacy “Lou” were both born and raised here. It’s such a great community!”
She said they hope to open the new store this coming September or October.
Strauss said the business specializes in sundaes made with homemade ice cream, orange dreamsicles, Triple XXX root beer floats, brownie and cinnamon roll ala mode, and — in the fall — pumpkin spice doughnut ala mode.
“When we open our shop, we will also have shakes,” she said. “We will also be able to have fresh fruit to add to our shaved ice and so much more.”
Strauss said Moo & Lou Frozen Treats is unique because of how it started.
“Maddie was such a loving, caring, beautiful person that always wanted people to be happy and smile,” she said. “We are carrying out her legacy of spreading joy, positivity, and happiness to others. We also love supporting other small businesses. If I am booked for an event, I send a list of other frozen treat vendors that may have availability. We also try and purchase local as much as possible. When our shop opens, we don’t want it to be any other ice cream shop, we want it to be a great experience and somewhere families can make happy memories.”
Moo & Lou Frozen Treats food truck locations can be found on Facebook. For more, visit Maddie Smiles at maddiesmiles.com.