The Forks blog

Klavon's Ice Cream Parlor being sold

Written by Melissa McCart on

19990624jmklavon1mKlavon's Ice Cream Parlor in the Strip District will close under current ownership this Friday, confirms Gloria Klavon Wolak, sister to Raymond J. Klavon, who opened the shop in his grandparents' former pharmacy. 

Mr. Klavon, an elementary school teacher and proprietor of the shop, died of lung cancer at the age of 64 in January.

After his death, his family decided to sell the shop to owners who intend to reopen under the same name.

Klavon's Pharmacy served Pittsburgh from 1920 to 1979, when it was boarded up until Mr. Klavon reopened the space as Klavon's Ice Cream Parlor in 1999.

Mr. Klavon rewired the electricity and redid the plumbing and heating, but the rest of the shop featured design elements of the pharmacy. 

"Everything you see in the store is original, from the 16-foot, all-marble soda fountain to the eight Art Deco chandeliers," Mr. Klavon told the Post-Gazette in June 1999.

"The ice cream freezers and syrup pumps are original and so is the inlaid terrazzo floor. Grandpap used to tell us that the shapes of the seats on the cast-iron fountain stools were modeled on a Coca-Cola bottle cap."

When it opened, the shop sold 12 kinds of Reinhold's ice cream, two frozen yogurts, two sugar-free ice creams, two sherbets, one sorbet, eight toppings, nine different sprinkles, three types of toasted nuts and five flavored whipped creams. 

Reinhold's Ice Cream had been North Side's ice cream company for over 100 years, until it was sold to LaSalle Brands Corporation in 2007. Mr. Klavon continued to buy ice cream from the company under new ownership.

Post-Gazette photo





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