Get your blizzard on, Rochester.
In what is perhaps the surest sign of the spring days to come, the downtown opened for its 46th season Thursday.
"It's always ice cream weather," said John Lambert, whom employees greeted by name as he walked into the Rochester mainstay Thursday afternoon. He ordered his favorite: an Oreo Blizzard. Then he took a minute to catch up with the people who run his favorite ice cream shop.
"I've been looking forward to this," said Lambert, who works at the nearby . "It's a long winter without it."
It was a conversation repeated throughout the day at the Main Street shop. When DQ opened at 11 a.m., there were about 25 people waiting in line. One car had been there since 8:30 a.m., employee Heidi Snell-Whitney said.
"It's the place to be," Snell-Whitney said. "We start to recognize customers and develop relationship with them. That's how we've become Rochester's favorite dessert destination."
Owner Tom Keller agreed. His family built the Dairy Queen in 1964. The shop, which is a short walk from the and , closes each winter. During spring and summer days, its parking lot is a frenzy of activity.
Keller said the shop's most-ordered treats are the Cookie Dough Blizzard and the Oreo Blizzard. His personal favorite? A simple vanilla cone with nuts.
Dairy Queen is open 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. In the summer, it is open from 11 a.m. - 11 p.m. daily.