Millie’s partners with UPMC and Kenny Pickett to introduce limited-time flavor

For Amanda Sheaffer, the new Sundae Funday Flavor at Millie’s Ice Cream is “perfect.”

“It was my ideal sundae,” Sheaffer, the store manager of Millie’s Oakland and Carnegie Mellon University, said. “It’s what I would get before I took over the shop. It is the same exact ice cream sundae that I always have wanted, so it’s right up my alley.”

Millie’s Ice Cream partnered with the UPMC Children’s Hospital Fund to create a new limited-time “Sundae Funday” flavor. The flavor has vanilla ice cream, chocolate fudge ribbon, chunks of cookie dough, cookies and cream and rainbow sprinkles. It’s available at Millie’s shops and Giant Eagle, and patients at the hospital worked together to create the flavor and its packaging.

While the kids crafted the flavor, Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett showed up to surprise them with assistance and feedback. 

Seeing the children at the hospital design the packaging brought Jessica Keyser, brand director of Millie’s, a lot of joy. 

“It’s called Sundae Funday because the times that we got to share with the kids were so fun,” Keyser said. “And we were so glad to be part of it. Everything about it was enjoyable.”

Millie’s as a company values charity and giving back to the community, according to Keyser. She said the company makes a point to identify “regionally different charitable pillars.” 

“When UPMC Children’s Foundation reached out about wanting to collaborate in some capacity to support their biggest annual fundraiser, that fell perfectly in line with what Millie’s supports,” Keyser said. 

The flavor is a “success,” according to Sheaffer, and she found it fun that the children got to design the packaging.

“Sundae Funday has been taking off,” Sheaffer said “It’s been wonderful to partner with Children’s Hospital and help them create their own flavor. It’s awesome to see how well this flavor is actually doing.”

Dominic Spatola, a sophomore computer engineering major, described the flavor as a “classic” and said he appreciates the sprinkles.

“I think sprinkles are something I would have never thought about,” Spatola said. “But they definitely had a nice pop of color. I don’t think I’ve ever seen sprinkles in packaged ice cream.”

The name “Sundae Funday” is an homage to the classic, typical image of an ice cream sundae paired with the “fun that was had by all in the shop that day,” according to a Millie’s press release. 

Sheaffer thinks the flavor is “unique” because the patients aided in its creation. 

“We’ve partnered with so many other members, but we like to keep it very unique to whichever partnership it is,” Sheaffer said. “And the fact that children created a very sweet flavor full of sugar with different fun toppings, I think it stands out.”

Keyser is “proud” of the work Millie’s is doing as a company and feels it’s beneficial for the Millie’s teams to hear the ideas people bring to them. 

“It’s personally rewarding,” Keyser said “Our team and talent grow based upon the inspiration that we received from all of these relationships that we form. To be able to support their own organization or cause, and they always have the best, creative, positive ideas. It’s really awesome to be able to see a lot of them and then to see how that inspires our team.” 

Evan Greenfield, a customer visiting campus, said the cookie dough chunks are his “favorite” part. 

“The cookie dough was the best,” Greenfield said. “It has big chunks, it’s good. I’ll go back for seconds. The more I eat it, the more adventurous it gets. I can taste the depth of the flavor.”

Keyser said Millie’s plans on doing more charitable partnerships in the future.

“We will never stop doing the charitable collaborations,” Keyser said. “As Millie’s grows and our franchise component grows, we will be expanding into different areas and we hope to work with future franchise partners to build the same charity and charitable relationships that we have built for ourselves and make the same impact as here in Pittsburgh.” 


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