The second week of January might seem like a tough time to open a shaved ice business, but J.D. Young isn’t daunted.
The owner of the 3-year-old Funky Monkeys Shaved Ice already has two locations and a mobile business.
Now, he’s opening a slightly different business in one of the new canopies in front of Union Station.
Funky Monkeys Shaved Ice 21+ will serve alcohol in its shaved ice.
“People always made the comments, ‘Oh, this would be good with vodka or rum,’ ” Young says of his shaved ice.
“It’s kind of like a specialty bar, I guess you would say,” he says of the new business. “Something new to offer to downtown besides the same old bars.”
Except the alcohol must come with shaved ice.
Like his first location in front of the Home Depot at K-96 and Woodlawn, which is a year-round business, Young will offer his alcoholic ice regardless of the season.
He says he thinks it will do well.
“I’ve just seen the demand, and people are excited,” Young says.
He believes there will be enough sales in January and the rest of the winter.
“It’s kind of like people drink their coffee in the summer,” Young says. He adds that “people drink more liquor in the winter time.”
“It also gives me a few months to work out all the kinks,” he says of opening then instead of the busy summer.
Young also will have regular shaved ice without alcohol.
Kameron Rich of J.P. Weigand & Sons and Mike Tokarz of Occidental Management, which is redeveloping Union Station, handled the deal for the canopy space. It’s the first one of four spots to be finalized.
Young says he sees the canopies and the plaza area in front of Union Station as a good gathering area for people to stop in before concerts or other arena events or before going to other Old Town venues.
“I see Union Station as a great opportunity.”