What happens when the trade show is over, and there’s still ice cream left over? It goes to prom.

Last weekend, the Great Lakes Ice Cream and Fast Food Association donated ice cream to the St. Philip High School sophomore class.

Jacob Thome, the sophomore class president at St. Philip High School, stopped by to pick up 30 gallons of leftover ice cream. He needed help with a fundraiser for prom and the GLIC + FFA donation came as a welcome surprise.

“I felt very blessed,” he said. “It was very fortunate to have this ice cream and (the association) help us out. It makes things easier.”

GLIC + FFA involves locals whenever there’s a conference, even if the event itself is for members only.

This year, the Harper Creek Pom Team put on a flash mob dance. Marshall artist Kimber Thompson painted food portraits during the trade show. Attendees received fliers with profiles of chefs to encourage them to try local restaurants.

The association brings around 700 members to Battle Creek for the conference and trade show, which stretched from Holiday Inn to Kellogg Arena.

Ice cream seems simple -- go to the store or stop by a place like Station 66 and you’ve got a cool treat.

However, a lot has to happen before a cone gets into your hands and that’s where the Great Lakes Ice Cream and Fast Food Association comes in. Conferences are a time to learn about new developments, like a lecture on digital signs, and to find the next big thing in ice cream.

The trade show was eye-opening. At one table, there was a demonstration of color-changing spoons. At another, someone tested flavorings that could be used with cream. Hot dogs rolled on the “Cadillac” of roller grills. 

And everywhere, there was ice cream. Moo-ville Creamery has a new ice cream that tastes like Mountain Dew. 

The staff for Ashby’s Sterling Ice Cream wore horns on their heads in honor of the Unicorn Stars mix. 

My/Mo introduced people to ice cream wrapped up in mochi, a chewy and sweet rice dough. 

Word spread about how good the Zanzibar flavor was at Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream Co.

Business owners tested and exchanged information and made plans for the summer season.

It all happened here in Battle Creek, thanks to the efforts of Kellogg Arena, Holiday Inn and the Calhoun County Visitors Bureau.