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Food & Drink

Dairy Queen and Rita's celebrate spring with free chills

Mary Pickels
| Tuesday, March 13, 2018, 3:42 p.m.
Dairy Queen
Rita's Italian Ice has named May 3 as National Italian Ice Day to honor and celebrate the signature treat Rita’s has built its brand on.
Rita's Italian Ice Facebook
Rita's Italian Ice has named May 3 as National Italian Ice Day to honor and celebrate the signature treat Rita’s has built its brand on.

It's finally March 20 — the first day of spring. The day when we all may grin and bear that annoying "I scream, you scream" ditty, as Dairy Queen holds its annual first day of spring small vanilla ice cream cone giveaway and Rita's Italian Ice celebrates its 26th annual First Day of Spring Italian ice giveaway.

Participating non-mall Dairy Queen and DQ Grill & Chill locations across the U.S. will celebrate the Fourth annual Free Cone Day, according to a release on the Dairy Queen/ Children's Miracle Network Hospitals website/ Donations will be accepted for local Children's Miracle Network Hospitals.

The Dairy Queen system is a national partner with Children's Miracle Network Hospitals and has raised more than $130 million since 1984 for more than 170 local children's hospitals across the U.S. and Canada, the release notes.

Rita's Italian Ice anticipates its 600-plus locations will give away more than 1 million cups of its classic Italian Ice, according to a release. Those wishing to upscale their ice can add Rita's frozen custard to their freebies for $1 on March 20, the release adds.

This year Rita's is looking for the best excuse a customer can dream up to escape from everyday life and get in a Rita's line. The winner will enjoy a year's worth of free Rita's and an "Ultimate Hooky Trip" — three days and two nights in Miami, Fla.

The contest will be conducted on Rita's Facebook page. After Rita's officials select three top candidates, Facebook fans will decide who comes up with the excuse most worthy of the free trip.

All three potential candidates will win a year of Rita's Italian Ice.

Details: ritasice.com/hookytrip

Mary Pickels is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at 724-836-5401 or mpickels@tribweb.com or via Twitter @MaryPickels.

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