“My wife Barbara has always wanted to own a business. She's one of six kids and when she was pretty young, her dad was laid off. I think that created this passion for developing something that was her own.
She’s always wanted to have her own business so I decided to bribe her into continuing to date me by telling her I’d help her start a business if she stayed in Baltimore. It was our trade off. Like, if you stay here and, you know, we get married, I promise I will help you no matter what happens.
She agreed and said, ‘I’m going to hold you to that promise.’"
"We were thinking about what was the right fit for us? Her parents own an ice cream shop in Massachusetts. It was their family business. Our idea was to keep the family business alive.
The love of ice cream, the location and the desire to really make something that was her own inspired us to start Bmore Licks.
When we opened our first location in Canton, we were not really sure what to expect. We thought it would take us at least a few years to build up our customer base, so we thought the best choice would be to control costs by living in the small apartment above the shop.
Me, my wife, our three-month-old son and her niece who was helping us with the shop, lived there for a year during our first two years of business. It made it easy to be in the shop to meet the new customers and make sure everything was going smoothly.
We had some really long days that first summer. Making ice cream all night after the shop closed, so it was really nice to not have a commute. Being in a tight space had its challenges, but I look back on that experience fondly. It felt like we were all squeezing in together to build our family business, which is also the type of fun family memory you can share when you reflect back."
"When we started thinking about opening a second location, Federal Hill came to mind. I grew up in South Baltimore and we’ve always loved Federal Hill as a neighborhood; it’s fun. There are stadiums and restaurants, there's tons to do here. We've always liked visiting and we also really liked this building. It's on a corner of a main street. It's close to a park and has a good neighborhood feel."
"Working with my wife and building something together is huge. I think that trickles out to our neighbors, customers, and community. We like to make sure we're giving customers what they like and enjoy, and also want them to feel good about purchasing and experiencing our products.
My wife’s parents started their ice cream business later in life. They didn't know anything about ice cream. It was a total gamble. That's been really inspirational to my wife and I, to see them struggle and succeed, and create something great. It’s the same for me. My parents help us all the time. My dad built our signs and he's always fixing things as needed. Seeing how invested our parents are in their families, their kids, and their communities, how hard they've worked, and how much they’ve sacrificed has been really inspirational for us.”