Ken Neff from Christ Central (Kidz Studios) in Lake City, FL brings us this ice cream stage design for their kids ministry.
What do you do during the month of July when it’s declared National Ice Cream Month? Why you build a giant waffle cone, sundae, ice cream sandwich and a container of Heavenly Hash.
For the waffle cone, they used two 4×8 sheets of plastic lattice, spray painted a glossy tan and left in the sun for a few hours to not only dry, but to get warm enough to get more flexible so it was easier to roll into a cone shape. Once it was screwed together, two 4×8 sheets of ¼ inch styrofoam sheets where primed and painted a tan (slighty different shade than the lattice) and then lined the inside of the lattice. Then they took some thick Styrofoam pieces and placed them inside about halfway to act as a shelf for the ice cream. A five gallon tub was placed on the shelf and a 36” beach ball was placed inside the tub and taped so it would not turn inside the tub. Cotton batting, both in sheets and pillow filler was used to form the ice cream then spray painted.
To add detail, two shades were used and silky brown material was cut and taped to make the mint chocolate chips. It was secured to the stage with a 2×4 frame. The sundae was a combination of an old aluminum photo shop frame (covered in mylar sheets) and a 7ft metal wagon wheel. The edge of the wheel was covered in a roll of air duct covering to make the edge of the bowl. Four more 36 beach balls formed the ice cream shape. They were taped together and the top one was slightly deflated to keep it more stable. They were then covered in cotton batting sheets and spray painted pink (strawberry) and brown (chocolate). More silky brown material was used for chocolate syrup, batting for ready whip, small 8 inch red play ball for a cherry and topped off with rainbow sprinkles (pool noodles cut up).
After checking with most ice cream companies, they could not supply an 8ft ice cream sandwich, so they had to make one. The bottom layer was a 2×4 frame placed at an angle, then the edges were covered in the brown silky material and secured with staples. Then they placed two 4×4’x1’ stage risers on the frame and covered with more white cotton batting along the sides. Then a 4x8x2inch thick Styrofoam sheet was used for the top. The edges were rounded with a knife and the covered in that famous silky brown material. This material was a clearance sale for a $1.00 a yard. To add a touch of detail, black spray paint dotted the top.
And of course they could not finish without a 200 gallon container of Heavenly Hash. A 2×4 frame was made and two 4×8 ¼ inch thick styrofoam sheets were taped together on the backside then primed and painted. It was secured to the frame with drywall screws. To save time, blue painters tape was used to add color without the mess. The ice cream on the front was tan packing material they had received in a box. It was taped together, cut into shape and spray painted before it was stapled to the front and white paper added the look of chunks. The lettering was bulletin board letters and they needed some cows, so they printed 11×17 cows. The lid was discarded plastic kiddie pool, edges painted and angled to give the appearance of an open lid. A wooden spoon that was part of a Christmas play six years ago was dusted off and screwed to the backside of the frame to scoop up the goodness.
This projected was created with a lot of recycled material from other stage sets which kept the cost down. Ken was asked why they didn’t have an ice cream truck on the stage. Well that’s because the real deal paid us a visit during one of the services.
Also be very careful of lighting, as getting them too close could cause a total meltdown.
Total hour on the project: 14 hours