Flurries serves desserts for charity

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A store called Flurries, which serves a new phenomenon called shaved snow, recently joined the Cypress business community. This dessert destination, at 5950 Corporate Ave. in Cypress, will not operate just to make money. Instead the investors who funded this venture plan to donate 100 percent of their proceeds to charitable causes. “The heart (of this business) is to give back,” Flurries owner Don Hirata said. “We want to give something for donations.”

A store called Flurries, which serves a new phenomenon called shaved snow, recently joined the Cypress business community. This dessert destination, at 5950 Corporate Ave. in Cypress, will not operate just to make money. Instead the investors who funded this venture plan to donate 100 percent of their proceeds to charitable causes. “The heart (of this business) is to give back,” Flurries owner Don Hirata said. “We want to give something for donations.”

Flurries serves shaved snow, which the owners based on a Taiwanese dessert. It’s a hybrid of shaved ice and ice cream.

“People come in and think we have shaved ice, but it’s not,” Hirata said. “It’s something new.”

Flurries opened March 30 – and not as a non-profit. Hirata described it as “a for-profit,” saying the “red tape and bureaucracy” of non-profit organizations convinced the investors to avoid becoming a non-profit.

Business has picked up with the warm weather of summer, and Hirata believes the store will soon be able to give to charity. Flurries served a pair of special events for Cotton Wood Church and Tutor Time. And as promised, Flurries donated all of the proceeds to a charity that both consumers chose.

It has also gained a following. Rumors circulated that one satisfied customer, who discovered the store while on vacation, wants to open one in Arizona.

“Someone has asked about it,” Hirata said.

Flurries was founded by members of the Catalyst Christian Community Church, which regularly meets at Stanford Middle School in Long Beach. These parishioners hatched a concept, which would later evolve into Flurries. Hirata credited Catalyst Christian Community Pastor Barry Geguchi as the man who came up with the idea.

The church originally wanted to open a café, and met with business consultants, but after carefully consideration, the café did not pass approval.

The investors opted to build a business around one of the dessert items on the café’s menu: shaved snow. However, Hirata’s brother-in-law believed he could improve the recipe, and after tinkering with the Taiwanese dessert, he presented his creation, which fuses American flavors with shaved snow.

“He worked on it until he got something we all liked,” Hirata said.

As of Monday, July 23, Flurries offered 12 different flavors. These included Strawberry Pie, Mint Chocolate Cookie, Orange Cream Cycles, Rocky Road, Lemon Bar, French Toast with Bacon, Salted Mocha, Green Tea with Strawberry, Rainbow Sherbet, Halo Halo, and Berry Berry Parfait. The menu will constantly be changing, with prices starting at $3.75.

The interior of the store feels like an art studio, with paintings covering every inch of the walls. “We wanted it to be comfortable,” Hirata said.

The store commissioned each painting and gave one artist his first opportunity to paint on canvas. In return, the artist created an homage to Flurries. Though none of the artwork can be purchased, as of right now, the store does not own any additional paintings, but it plans to sell all of them eventually.

Items for sale, in addition to the shaved ice bars, include Flurries T-shirts. Additionally, a shelf opposite the check-out counter has been established as a donation zone for other charities, all of which have permission to peddle their merchandise.

Flurries’ hours of operation are Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Friday through Saturday from 11 to 12 a.m.; and Sunday from 1 to 11 p.m.

For more information, call 714-826-2848 or visit http://flurriesshavedsnowbar.com/.

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