Toft's Dairy customers can now stay cool in the shade.
The ice cream parlor has finished construction on a new outdoor covered patio and has "dressed up" the entrances to its Venice Road shop.
But it took a couple of takes for some customers to notice the difference.
Melanie Retzke of Wilmington, N.C., who was visiting her cousin, said she knew something was different, but was so distracted by the ice cream she couldn't quite pinpoint what exactly was new.
"Every time I come (to Sandusky) I visit here," Retzke said. "And I visit (Toft's) a lot."
The parlor at 3717 Venice Road was built in 1986. Other than a few tables outside, Toft's did not have much seating.
"It was time to refresh," said Eugene Meisler, president of Toft's Dairy.
The entrances are now accented with blue and white covered arches and the new covered patio is equipped with ceiling fans to cool off customers on a hot summer day.
Maxine Howard of Lorain said she makes special trips to Toft's almost every two weeks. Howard said she likes the new look and is especially impressed by the fans.
"It keeps the bugs out," she said. "And if it rains, I can still sit outside and eat my ice cream."
Retzke's cousin, Sandusky resident Laureen Bollinger, said she thinks the outdoor renovation is "nice" and "attractive."
"I like it because you're not in the hot sun when you're enjoying your ice cream," Bollinger said. "It's not melting."
Construction on the covered patio is complete. However, 12 tables are slated to arrive mid-July to complete the outdoor expansion.
"When it's done, it will look very attractive," Meisler said.
Toft's also has locations in Port Clinton and Fremont.