Is there anything better than an ice-cold dessert on a blazing hot summer day? No. No there isn’t. Luckily, Jackson has the perfect locally-owned business to get that hits-the-spot cold treat you need: Surf’s Up Shaved Ice!
I grew up eating snow cones that are coarse with larger chunks of ice. I remember the very first time I had the softer shaved ice variety, which has more of a snow texture. I was in Hawaii on the North Shore and went to a local place called Matsumoto. I never realized there was a difference, but after that experience, I much prefer the softer texture. Surf’s Up serves this snowy shaved ice in a huge variety of flavors! They can also add a sno-cap on top, which tastes like sweet milk. I don’t think I’ll ever skip getting a sno-cap because it’s just so delicious! Some of the most popular flavors at Surf’s Up are Tiger’s Blood, Blue Raspberry, and Bahama Mama.
The prices at Surf’s Up are worth noting because you can get treats for the whole family for $10 or less! They have 3 sizes: Boogie Board (8oz), Short Board (12oz), and Long Board (16oz), which are $2.00, $2.50, and $3.00 respectively. Topping it off with sno-cap is 50 cents extra, and so worth it.
Surf’s Up opened last summer, but the family that started it has since moved to another city. When the business went up for sale, Bill Kisner and his daughter Emily came across it. Emily, a middle school science teacher at Milan Middle, and her sister Beth had been looking to get into business for themselves, and this seemed like a perfect opportunity. Beth also runs a jewelry business called Night Owl Designs. Emily had planned to work during the summer while she was out of school, and Surf’s Up is perfect for that.
Bill Kisner says, “We are just so very thankful for all the support of folks coming in and being loyal customers. Some people come multiple times a day.” This doesn’t surprise me! As soon as I finished the root beer with sno-cap that I ordered, I was ready to try ten more flavors. I hope you’ll all stop by for a delicious treat this summer and support this local family business! They are in the lot next to North Side High School on Highland Avenue and are open Monday-Saturday, noon-9pm. You may also occasionally see them at special events.
Check out the Surf’s Up Shaved Ice Facebook page for contests and specials.
Kristi Woody is a photographer and storyteller for our Hello Jackson features about locally owned retail stores and restaurants. She also works as the university photographer for Union University and owns her own wedding photography business, Woody & Pearl Photography. In her free time, Kristi enjoys spending time with her husband and rambunctious beagle, Rhett and Chipper respectively. If you can't find Kristi in Jackson, you'll find her in her second favorite place: Disney World!