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  • Writer's pictureDallas Area Visitors

Day 5: The Best Time For Ice Cream Is Always...Even On A Sunday!

Ice cream's origins are known to reach back as far as the second century B.C., although no specific date of origin nor inventor has been indisputably credited with its discovery. We know that Alexander the Great enjoyed snow and ice flavored with honey and nectar. Biblical references also show that King Solomon was fond of iced drinks during harvesting. During the Roman Empire, Nero Claudius Caesar (A.D. 54-86) frequently sent runners into the mountains for snow, which was then flavored with fruits and juices. 1

The first official account of ice cream in the America comes from a letter written in 1744 by a guest of Maryland Governor William Bladen. The first advertisement for ice cream in this country appeared in the New York Gazette on May 12, 1777, when confectioner Philip Lenzi announced that ice cream was available "almost every day." Records kept by a Chatham Street, New York, merchant show that President George Washington spent approximately $200 for ice cream during the summer of 1790. Inventory records of Mount Vernon taken after Washington's death revealed "two pewter ice cream pots." President Thomas Jefferson was said to have a favorite 18-step recipe for an ice cream delicacy that resembled a modern-day Baked Alaska. Check out President Jefferson's vanilla ice cream recipe here. In 1813, Dolley Madison served a magnificent strawberry ice cream creation at President Madison's second inaugural banquet at the White House. 1

It was brought to our attention that there's a nasty rumor floating around that it's illegal to buy and eat ice cream in Dallas Oregon on a Sunday. Considering the absurd nature of this statement, I had to investigate the nonsense. In doing so, we discovered that the Dallas City Police need to put in cuffs and lock us away forever!

Although Dallas specifically doesn't have an ordinance stating we are not to purchase or consume Ice Cream on a Sunday, the State of Oregon does have this law! According to "Ice cream may not be consumed on Sunday's in Oregon." 4

Other absurd Oregon laws include: 4

- Babies may not be carried on the running board of a car.

- One may not bathe without suitable clothing on.

- Dishes must drip dry.

- You cannot eat a doughnut and walk backwards on a city street in Marion County.

After more research we haven't been able to find anything against consuming Ice Cream on Sundays in any of Dallas' city codes and ordinances. Additionally, nothing is stated for Polk County against this major offense either. According to the State of Oregon Legislature Website, there is nothing prohibiting this dessert on the holy day.

"A lot of (officials) don't know these obscure laws exist," said COCC political science professor Rodney Hanson. "They don't even know where they are -- they are in some files. It's not like they have them listed every one of those." 6

Hanson said usually government officials will pass these laws because there was a need seen at the time, but end up just staying in the books with no time limit, being forgotten. 

"All those were passed years ago by local city councils, state Legislatures -- and then they never go back to check on their statues or ordinances."

He said some Oregonians may not think of these laws as outrageous. Hanson said some of the laws reflect on the community's religious values. So is that why we have a "no ice cream on Sundays" law? We went looking for the answers, but no luck. Even the office of state Sen. Tim Knopp, R-Bend, was unable to track it down. 6

So does the law even exist?

"It's very hard to find all the laws. They just keep piling up, and they're in files in county offices," Hanson said. "And very few cities want to spend the time to go back and say, 'Okay, do we still have this?' -- and a lot of cities have." 6

If this law still stands true and it is illegal to eat ice cream on Sunday's, the Dallas Area Visitors Center staff will gladly call and turn themselves into the police as we are enjoying a delicious mile high mud pie from Washington Street Steakhouse & Pub! ON A SUNDAY!

Better call 911....It's Sunday and I'm eating a Sundae!

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