He's Known As Buffalo's 'Ice Creamcycle Dude' And What He's Doing For Kids Is Awesome

July 19, 2016

Donations are pouring in for James Karagiannis, Buffalo's "Ice Creamcyle Dude."

Karagiannis, 36, owns a fleet of five cycles that visit the city's disadvantaged neighborhoods, selling ice cream for just $1, or for free in exchange for a correct answer to a history or math question.

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Photo credit: Robert Kirkham / Buffalo News

With his reflector sunglasses and sneakers the color of a blueberry Popsicle, Karagiannis is a familiar sight in many parts of the city.

But after almost a decade in business, Karagiannis still feels the sting when saying no to a kid who doesn't have a dollar for ice cream. So he and his drivers keep a stash of freebies to give to children who cannot afford a frozen treat.

Still, nothing is free. The youngster must answer a math or history question.

buffalo ice cream man free good news
Photo credit: Robert Kirkham / Buffalo News

News spread fast on social media about Karagiannis' business model, so he started a "Pay It Forward" campaign to allow people to buy ice cream for deserving children.

In return for your donation, Karagiannis has the child who receives a free ice cream write a thank you card which he then mails to you.

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"I truly did not think we'd raise more than $500," Karagiannis wrote on Facebook. "I'm afraid to look at the current total but it's got to be over $6k and who knows where it'll be when I wake up tomorrow morning."

buffalo ice cream man free good news
Photo credit: Robert Kirkham / Buffalo News

"It's all just so overwhelming right now," he added.

Anyone wishing to donate can do so online.

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