College Hill business that was damaged by fire is finally ready to reopen

Summer is prime-time for ice cream sales.

But Frost — the popular Wichita dessert shop at 3429 E. Douglas known for its homemade ice cream, decadent chocolate cake and gooey oatmeal cream pies — has missed the entire summer: A lightning strike on June 5 resulted in an attic fire that left enough damage, the shop had to close for repairs.

Nearly three months have passed, and those repairs are almost complete, said owner Jada Shiya. She says she’ll reopen Frost on Friday, Sept. 1, and celebrate with an all-day party on Saturday, Sept. 2, that will have a fire theme.

“People have been reaching out and definitely letting us know they miss us,” said Shiya, adding that the repairs took nearly twice as long as she thought they would. “They ask us when we’re going to reopen and say, ‘The Summer wasn’t the same without you guys.’ There’s been a lot of community outreach, so that’s been really special.”

Shiya said she had to repair the attic along with items in the counter area that suffered water and smoke damage. But for the most part, she said, the shop should look almost the same as it did before. She was able to switch up the seating situation a bit and has added some bar tables in front of the windows, she said.

Frost will look mostly the same when it reopens three months post-fire.
Frost will look mostly the same when it reopens three months post-fire.

On Sept. 1, Frost will resume its normal business hours: noon to 9 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sundays. Saturday, Sept. 2, will feature several fire-themed activities. A balloon twister will be on site from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and from 1 to 2 p.m. a fire truck will be in the parking lot for people to explore.

From 5 to 8 p.m., the shop will have live acoustic guitar music inside, and at 9 p.m., a fire dancer will perform in the parking lot.

Shiya will also serve a couple of fire-themed ice cream flavors: burnt sugar praline and smoked white chocolate — the latter of which is being made with the use of Station 8 BBQ’s smoker. She also plans to serve a sundae using the two fire-themed ice creams topped with toasted marshmallow and served with a lightning bolt cookie.

Although the fire was serious, she said, the shop was closed on the Monday afternoon that it happened, and no one was injured. She was also able to get back all of her employees except for two who left for college.

Having a little fun with the fire theme felt appropriate, she said.

“When life gives you lightning, make lemonade,” Shiya said with a laugh.