Customers scoop up Molly Moon’s ice cream, donate to Anna Banana Milk Fund

Molly Moon's Homemade Ice Cream shop has become a local haven for many ice cream lovers. With its organic ingredients and innovative flavors, there's something in it for everyone who walks through the doors.

Molly Moon’s Homemade Ice Cream shop has become a local haven for many ice cream lovers. With its organic ingredients and innovative flavors, there’s something in it for everyone who walks through the doors.

Although the owner and founder of Molly Moon’s — Molly Moon Neitzel — was hesitant toward expanding outside of Seattle, she was urged to open shop in Redmond when she received a “phone call from (her) friend Ben Freedman,” owner of Homegrown Sandwiches, who informed her that there was a “‘beautiful opening right next door'” to his shop on Cleveland Street, and was hoping she could come take a look at the place.

Neitzel kindly obliged, and instantly fell in love with the place after her first visit. She adored “the owners of Homegrown because (they) shared the same values, and loved the landlord.”

Bailey Navratil, the manager at the Redmond shop, mentioned that they “have been doing so amazing” since their grand opening only three months ago. “We were the seventh addition to the Molly Moon’s family and have gradually become the busiest shop,” Navratil said.

Both Navratil and Neitzel are “really proud of the team” that has been assembled in Redmond. It created almost 30 new jobs.

In addition to the ice cream shop itself, Neitzel started a fund titled the Anna Banana Milk Fund, named after her sister Anna who passed away in a motorcycle accident shortly after the opening of the very first Molly Moon’s shop. A donation of $10 to the fund provides enough milk for a family for an entire month.

Neitzel mentioned that the fund has been doing extraordinarily this year, with “over $50,000 raised this year.” She credits part of the success of this fund to the strong support from the community. To make a donation to the Anna Banana Milk Fund, visit tinyurl.com/l4cgyxe.

Although Neitzel and her team are still working on creating a system that allows customers to donate to the fund from their local shops, on June 1, National Milk Day, customers were asked if they would like to make a donation to the Anna Banana Milk Fund.

Navratil recalled the generous donations made by almost every customer, and it was the day that she “truly felt the power of giving.” Molly Moon’s also matched every donation that was made to the fund. She remembered a family of three (a mother, a father and a son) entering the shop, who informed Navratil about the milk that they were provided with because of the milk fund. The mother told Navratil that having the milk available for their son to eat cereal provided a sense of normalcy to his day. The power of this interaction was unparalleled for Navratil.