The thermometer may remind us it is still winter, but Cape Codders know this weekend is the unofficial start to spring — because Steve and Sue’s Partee Freeze will be reopening for the season on Saturday.
This year will mark the Hyannis restaurant’s 40th season of food, fun, and of course, fro-yo. While the weather may befro and you may be shivering, Partee Freeze will be offering a 2 -for-1 sundae deal on Saturday and Sunday.
Partee Freeze is also known for its mini golf course, yummy soft serve ice cream, a variety of specialty cones, and a lunch menu that includes everything from lobster rolls and chips to hot dogs and chowder. But what many people may not know about Partee Freeze is how the restaurant came to be, and the history of the lovely family that owns it.
Partee Freeze opened in 1978 when owners Steve and Sue managed to pull some funds together from family and friends, and secured a small loan from a local bank. Steve and Sue are high school sweethearts who married after Steve returned from the Vietnam war. They had three kids, Stacey, Jason, and Todd, who recalled spending days taking naps on the floor in the Partee Freeze back room while Sue worked the restaurant during the day, and Steve worked on weekends as his second job.In 1987 as the restaurant got busier, Steve quit his job at a phone company and began working at Partee Freeze full time with Sue.
In 1989 tragedy struck the family in when Steve and Sue’s 17-year-old son, Jason, died in a car crash on his way home from work.
Some years later the family decided to pull together some funds to create a yearly scholarship in Jason’s name for working Cape Cod seniors who have plans to go to college in the future. The scholarship is known as the Jason A. Fedele scholarship and typically gives out $5,000 to $7,000 a year to help hard-working students with book costs and the cost of living when they are away at college.
Today the restaurant remains a family affair as daughter Stacey runs things during the day and many of the owners’ grandchildren work there over the summers.
So happy spring, Partee Freeze, and welcome back!
(Partee Freeze is located at455 W Main St, Hyannis.)
—By Kaitlyn Holzworth