Small Business Spotlight: Mootown Ice Cream and Dessert Shoppe

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Small Business Spotlight: Mootown Ice Cream and Dessert Shoppe

Nothing can stop two Detroit-bred sisters when they set out to achieve —at least that was the case for Christine and Kimberly Kelley. Kimberly and Christine, also known as “Sugar,” founded the successful Mootown Ice Cream and Dessert Shoppe right in the heart of Detroit’s Eastern Market.

Mootown opened its doors on May 13th, 2011, after Kim and Sugar saw and acted on what they believed was a great Detroit Opportunity. A beautiful space, Mootown features a unique design crafted primarily by Sugar, who is also an interior designer.

“We assessed what was missing in Eastern Market and we came up with an ice cream shop” said Kimberly. “We’re the first ice cream shop to open.”

The absence of an ice cream shop was a surprise to them, particularly Kim who has a long history with the Eastern Market.

“For 15 years I implemented the non-profit organization that’s running the Eastern Market. I was part of that negotiation team with Greater Downtown Detroit, Eastern Market, Eastern Market Advancement Coalition, and the Mayor’s office. Once that happened I became the V.P. of Marketing and Community Relations for the market for 10 years.”

Kim’s relationship with the Eastern Market didn’t start out as strictly professional. She and her family have been visiting the Eastern Market since she was a little kid.

Kim and Sugar take pride in Detroit, stating that “We’ve been here. We stayed in Detroit. We love Detroit. It’s had its tough times but it never died. It’s always had a vibrant existence.” That vibrant existence is certainly complemented by the positive spirit and hope Kim has for Detroit.

When asked if she had any advice for budding entrepreneurs looking to take advantage of all the opportunity Detroit has to offer, she said “to have a business plan.” “I wasn’t a believer in one, but now I am.”

Kim and Sugar’s dedication to Detroit was rewarded with success, and now Mootown continues to expand. More than 5 years after opening its doors, Mootown is now offering popsicles, smoothies, and a partnership with Detroit Bold Coffee, with plans for greater expansion in the future. Mootown Ice Cream and Dessert Shoppe continues to define itself as an Eastern Market staple.


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Be sure to check out more from Mootown on their Facebook page.

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