Fans flock to Dairy Queen opening

New owners plan expanded menu.

Customers wait in line on Dairy Queen opening day Monday. —Julia Goujiamanis

In an unofficial sign of summer, a line of parents and eager children stretched out the door and into the parking lot Monday when the Dairy Queen in Edgartown reopened under new management.

“I’m nervous, but mostly excited,” said Paul Beeson, who recently bought the iconic ice cream store with business partner Kirsten Anderson. “This is something we’ve thought about for nine months. And it’s something that’s finally happened.”

He said they had hoped to open the store on March 1, but the transfer of ownership took longer than he expected. 

At precisely 3 pm Monday, more than a dozen customers lined up outside the door, many of them students just getting out of school — and apparently a few who let themselves out of school.

Emily Callahan, a special education teacher at the Edgartown School, said she heard about the opening-day excitement from her students. 

“They were talking in the hallway, getting all excited,” she said. “We heard some kids left school early, too.”

Leah Cimeno, 13, said she was drawn in when she saw the crowd outside. “I was kind of surprised; I didn’t know that the opening was today,” she said. She and several friends waited about 10 minutes in line for vanilla and brownie batter Blizzards. 

Dairy Queen arrived on the Vineyard in 1967, and is one of the Island’s few off-Island chains. It has changed ownership several times over the years, and was closed for a decade after the space was sold in 1983. It belonged to the Celeste family until Beeson and Anderson bought it. 

Beeson said they hope to introduce new food items in the future to expand the traditional Dairy Queen menu. He previously started a landscaping company, and said there’s a need for fast food in Edgartown, given the number of working landscapers and carpenters. 

Having a parking lot in such a busy area, Beeson said, makes the store accessible to the community. 

Bob Brown, a lifelong Island resident, said he remembers when the Dairy Queen was just a walk-up window. On Monday, he brought his two grandsons, Tegan and Benny, to the opening to try the soft ice cream, introducing them to a family tradition.

It’s “a good sign that summer’s here,” he said. 


  1. I am so happy to be able to buy a treat that I can afford, why not Dunkin Donuts? Excellent price on breakfast sandwiches and decent coffee at a price seniors, families and others that have limited income can afford. I ask again why not, why do three or four restaurant owners decide how much we pay? Local? Please how about monopoly !

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