October 22, 2014

Elyria
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15 Minutes: Meet ice cream server Erin Ponting

Erin Ponting
Age: 17
Lives in: Elyria
Pursuit: Ice cream server for three years at Twist-n-Shake, 230 Cleveland St.

What’s the most common confection you make?

Honestly? A medium vanilla cone.

What’s the age range of your customers?

We have lots of babies all the way up to the elderly. Everybody likes ice cream.

What about pets?

Oh, we get a lot of dogs. We have a special dog bowl for little dogs — that come up here with customers. We love the dogs, they’re so cute.

What’s the most complex item you can make?

That’s on the menu?

Yes.

The banana splits. They’re not really complex, but I have the most fun making banana splits.

What’s your favorite — the one you would make for yourself?

I make a twister with cake batter flavoring, brownies and chocolate chunks.

Have you created an ice cream treat?

I made one for another worker — it’s chocolate ice cream, marshmallow, brownie and sprinkles.

Do you have a name for it?

I don’t have a name for it. I just try to think of things that go well together.

Have you had any mishaps?

The worst is when someone orders a large sherbet cone with, say a blue-raspberry dip. The sherbet doesn’t like to stay in the cone and you have something like a 30 percent chance, with a large cone, that the sherbet will fall into the dip. It’s really sad.

Have you developed a technique to get around that?

Pray — and a fast dunk.

Where do you go to school, and what are your plans for the future?

I’m a senior at Elyria High School. I’m in Advanced Placement physics. I’m going into chemistry. I’m set on going to Ohio State University.

Do you have any final thoughts on scooping ice cream?

It’s so fun. I enjoy watching how happy people are when you hand out the product. They get so excited and happy about it.

Twenty years from now, when you’re a chemist working on some new compound or related activity, what will you think when you look back on this job?

I’ve learned a lot of communication skills, time management and lots of people skills. You have to be nice. Once in a while someone comes up who’s unhappy or a little mean, but we work around them and we get them happy. Ice cream eventually gets them happy.

Chronicle photographer Chuck Humel shines the spotlight on the people of Lorain County each week. Know someone worthy of 15 Minutes? E-mail chumel@chroniclet.com.

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