Veteran opens snow cone shop at Noccalula

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Sarrah Peters/News Editor

Kerry Criswell, a Marine Corps veteran, has opened a snow cone store at Noccolula Falls Park. Rainbow Tropical Sno held a ribbon cutting ceremony on Sept. 11. 

Criswell spent 15 years in the Marine Corps. He started his military career young. At only 17, he was in Beirut, Lebanon witnessing the bombing of the barracks that killed almost 250 people.

As a result of his military career, he has spent a lot of his life traveling. Criswell has traveled to Japan, Dubai, Jordan, the Phillipines, Canada, and a lot of the United States.

“I can’t name a state I haven’t seen,” said Criswell.

Born in Indiana, Criswell ended up in the Rainbow City area after his parents bought a campground nearby. He joined them when he left the Marine Corps.

Criswell then bought a snow cone store in Rainbow City at a mini golf course. He started looking at other locations, setting his sights on Noccolula Falls Park. It took time, but he was finally allowed to move into the old gift shop and make his shop.

“The park has been wonderful to me,” said Criswell. “I could not ask for a better place, and I hope to be here for a long time.”

The store offers about 60 flavor combinations, so that everyone can find a unique favorite. The flavors will change occasionally to offer customers new choices. 

With the end of summer and cool fall nights, Criswell is expanding the store’s menu to include barbeque, chili, hot dogs and hot chocolate. The hot dogs will be prepared in a special way he learned during his travels in Mexico. The dog is split down the middle, grilled, and filled with toppings. 

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