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To celebrate their 70th anniversary, Carvel Ice Cream is attempting to build the world's largest ice cream pie in Union Square right now. They started at 9AM, and Gothamist hears they are giving out free pies!

Carvel is holding a number of promotions for the anniversary starting this Friday, May 28, through Memorial, Monday, May 31, such as:

-$.70 for a small soft serve ice cream cone; each additional size will be an additional $.70.
- Buy any boxed novelty item, and get the second one for just $.70.
- Buy one classic soft serve sundae, and get the second one for $.70.
- $7.70 for a Deluxe Sundae Dinner Cake.

There are also other promotions that run through the summer. If anyone gets pictures of the Union Square event, let Gothamist know; Jake refuses to go on the grounds that he doesn't have enough Lactaid. [Via Shannan - thanks]

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As many people who grew up in areas where there were Carvel ice cream stores, the theme song was "Car-vel...Fresh...Ice...Cream," and the most beloved ice cream cakes were Fudgie the Whale and Cookie Puss, who must the coolest ice cream cake ever. As legend has it, Cookie Puss was a St. Patrick's Day cake ("Cookie O'Puss"). The Beastie Boys even wrote a song called Cookie Puss. And, as one commenter points out, Tom Carvel inventedsoft-serve ice cream AND did the voice-overs for the Carvel commericals.

Jon Snyder, founder of Ciao Bello, who now runs Il Laboratorio del Gelato, has Carvel roots: His grandparents were franchisees.