Generations enjoy Bo's Ice Cream since 1954

- Tampa natives know the best place to get a cool treat that soothes the palate and the soul is Bo's Ice Cream in Seminole Heights. 

July is National Ice Cream month, but Bo's has been serving up creamy, sugary smiles since 1954. Many who walk through the doors today have been customers since their parents took them as a child. 

Daniel Mendez is one of those customers. He said he takes his girlfriend and nieces to his favorite place to cool off. 

"My mom and dad used to bring me here when I was a kid," Mendez said.

Bo's holds the title of oldest ice cream shoppe in Tampa - started by the Bosanko family. Kenneth Bosanko said he watched his father build the creamery from the ground, up.

"My father wanted a place to to get good ice cream and couldn't find any," Bosanko said. "So he moved to Florida and opened one up." 

"Back then, you could score yourself a cone for just a dime," Bosanko recalled. "My dad was a purchasing agent and knew how to buy stuff without paying too much for it." 

Bo's started out offering just a few flavor options. Since then, it's come a long way.

"We make good ice cream and we try to sell it at a fair price," Kenneth explained. "Banana split is probably our number one seller. We make it in a cup... Make a good hot brown fudge sundae, strawberry shortcake, and all kinds of sundaes and ice cream sodas, floats and milkshakes." 

It's worth noting, the banana split in a cup in Bo's number-one seller. 

Tammy Vitte is Kenneth's daughter. Now 53, she started working at Bo's as a young teenager.

"I remember working with my grandfather actually. He had a big influence on me." Vitte said.  "Him showing me how to make ice cream. Making the butter pecan and banana split and stuff like that."

While the summer heat lures in guests, the flavor combinations are what really bring the crowds.

"We've had 61 wonderful years and hopefully we will have another 61 wonderful years," Bosanko said.

Up Next:


Up Next

  • Generations enjoy Bo's Ice Cream since 1954
  • Specialty wheelchairs help athletes thrive
  • Dough Nation has tasty treats for a sweet cause
  • Dog's legacy becomes Tampa-based business
  • For Tampa woman, big business in big bracelets
  • Food truck raises money for kids
  • Downtown ministry's mission helps homeless
  • Couple's love for literature tangible in Ybor City store
  • After 30 years, volunteer water aerobics instructor hangs up her towel
  • Senior community wins awards for short film