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Our screams have been heard, with the opening of Shawn Michelle’s Homemade Ice Cream in Butterfield Plaza, located at 3252 Vollmer Road in Olympia Fields. Following a successful “soft opening” in late June, Shawn Michelle’s hosted a festive grand opening and ribbon cutting on Saturday, July 9, that was marked by long lines of customers and a host of friends, family, and local dignitaries. Conservative estimates place the number of attendees at approximately 500, many of whom traveled from other communities to join in the celebration. Guests enjoyed delicious ice cream from the shop’s extensive offerings, danced to the beats of a DJ spinning old school music, and took ice cream selfies against the backdrop of the shop’s photo wall.
Shawn Michelle’s Homemade Ice Cream was established in 1994 by husband and wife team, Yahya and Nataki Muhammad, high school sweethearts whose wedding anniversary, fittingly, coincided with the day of the grand opening. The Olympia Fields store is Shawn Michelle’s third location. The couple’s flagship store is located at 46 East 47th Street in the Bronzeville area of Chicago.
Addressing the crowd of well-wishers, Yahya Muhammad spoke passionately about the couple’s entrepreneurial journey. “Working through faith and just not giving up…not quitting…keeping my aspirations high in the sky and just seeing it through,” is the reason they are where they are today, said Muhammad. Nataki Muhammad echoed her husband’s sentiment and added, “We deserve a beautiful place…here it is; we deserve a wonderful product…here it is; we deserve amazing customer service…here it is—right here in Olympia Fields.”
Village President Sterling Burke presented the Muhammads with a proclamation designating July 9, as Shawn Michelle’s Homemade Ice Cream Day in Olympia Fields. President Burke remarked, “We are really, really pleased to have [the Muhammads] here, because they are “the “epitome of what we believe in…entrepreneurship.”
Representing the Village’s Economic Development Commission were co-chairs, Trinette Britt-Johnson and Michael Lewis, who presented the couple with a framed copy of their business license and a welcome gift of $250. “We are so excited for Shawn Michelle’s to be here,” commented Britt-Johnson.
Also in attendance were Village Trustees Sandra Finley and William Pennington, Economic Development Commissioner Phillip Paige, Beautification Committee Chair Arlene Burke, Village Administrator Drella Savage, Rich Township Supervisor Calvin Jordan, and Cook County Commissioner Donna Miller.
Shawn Michelle’s is serving up sweet treats in the south suburbs, including signature flavors like Pralines & Cream, Jamaican Rum Raisin, Bourbon Butter Pecan, and even Lunchroom Butter Cookie. They also offer a substantial vegan menu. Ice cream lovers now have a new destination place for gourmet homemade ice cream, right here in Olympia Fields.