Soda jerk specialist Cary Farnsworth has a dream to bring an old-school ice cream soda fountain shop to Altadena, and name it C.K.Farnsworth’s Soda Fountain and Luncheonette. Farnsworth already raised the general operating expenses, but launched a Kickstarter campaign yesterday to help move the business forward.
Farnsworth started C.K.Farnsworth’s Mobile Soda Fountain ten years ago, after watching silent films with soda jerks. Fascinated by their showmanship, Farnsworth researched the culture, ordered supplies and memorabilia, and then launched the operation. In addition to running a mobile soda fountain, Farnsworth also gives historic talks on the Queen Mary ship in Long Beach and the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood, handing out soda treats as part of his lectures.
Farnsworth always wanted to open a brick and mortar, but because they’re usually ornately outfitted and decorated, it meant it was crucial to find the right location. A friend secured an Altadena space, but Farnsworth won’t provide the exact address. If and when the Kickstarter reaches its goal, the soda fountain’s home will be on Mariposa Street in a bank built in the 1920s, with terra cotta glazed bricks, skylights, and Art Deco design. Farnsworth will only use Fosselman’s ice cream.
The Kickstarter funds are to help secure the Altadena location and restore historic equipment. Farnsworth wants to recreate the building into a shop with immersive displays. Farnsworth wants to revive soda fountain culture by explaining the origins of ice cream, seltzer, and ice cream shops in America.
C.K.Farnsworth’s Soda Fountain and Luncheonette’s Kickstarter launched on yesterday on July 16 and ends on August 16.