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Rita’s Celebrates First Day of Spring with Free Italian Ice and New Flavor

Frozen treat chain partners with the Sour Patch Kids brand to introduce a new sour-then-sweet flavor during annual Italian ice giveaway.

Mar 13, 2024

Rita’s Italian Ice & Frozen Custard, the iconic frozen treats destination and, for many, the brand that is synonymous with the first day of spring, invites guests to celebrate the arrival of the new season with a free Rita’s Italian Ice giveaway on Tuesday, March 19, 2024.

Guests who visit a Rita’s location on the first day of spring, Tuesday, March 19, will receive a free six-ounce Italian Ice in the available flavor of their choice. Guests can pick from Rita’s Italian Ice classics or try Rita’s newest flavor, Sour Patch Kids Watermelon Ice, inspired by everyone’s favorite sour-then-sweet candy. Rita’s 550+ locations are expected to give away approximately 1 million cups of their classic Italian Ice throughout the celebration!

Sour Patch Kids Watermelon Ice will be available at Rita’s for a limited time starting the first day of spring, March 19, adding a burst of tangy and tart watermelon to Rita’s diverse menu. Guests can indulge in Rita’s Sour Patch Kids Watermelon Gelati featuring Sour Patch Kids Watermelon Ice, creamy vanilla Frozen Custard, and topped with Rita’s new sour watermelon topping. For a refreshing on-the-go treat, try the Sour Patch Kids Watermelon Ice Blender, which highlights the sour-then-sweet watermelon flavor in a cool and invigorating beverage. The Sour Patch Kids Watermelon Ice can also be enjoyed across Rita’s menu of signature treats.

“Our first day of spring giveaway has become a cherished tradition with our guests, and this year, we’re elevating the celebration with the exclusive launch of Sour Patch Kids Watermelon Ice,” said Linda Chadwick, President and CEO of Rita’s Italian Ice & Frozen Custard. “At Rita’s, our guests inspire us to push our flavor innovation further each year and we are thrilled to partner with the Sour Patch Kids brand to deliver this unique take on a sour-then-sweet favorite in only a way Rita’s can. We hope to see everyone at Rita’s on March 19 to enjoy a free cup of Ice on us.”

Looking for more sweetness? Download the Rita’s Ice app and start earning rewards on your purchases and receive a free small Ice just for signing up. Those who aren’t Rita’s loyalty members yet can download the Rita’s Ice app from the Apple or Google Play stores, or by visiting Join now to receive free treats, birthday rewards, exclusive app offers, and more!

Rita’s signature Italian Ice is made fresh daily on-site and available in a rotating daily selection from over 75 flavors. Other menu items at Rita’s include creamy Frozen Custard, signature Gelati, Concretes, Frozen Coffee, Rita’s BlendersTM, Milkshakes, and more.

Originally founded in May 1984, Philadelphia firefighter Bob Tumolo created his prized family recipe to include real fruit, named the product after his wife Rita, and Rita’s Italian Ice was born. Since then, Rita’s has staked its claim in the frozen treats industry by planting franchises across the country that offer a happy atmosphere, as well as set the standard for fresh and quality-driven Italian Ice.

For more information about Rita’s Italian Ice & Frozen Custard and to find your closest location, please visit

Sour Patch Kids is a trademark of Mondelēz International group, used under license.

Mondelēz International, Inc. (Nasdaq: MDLZ) empowers people to snack right in over 150 countries around the world. With 2021 net revenues of approximately $29 billion, MDLZ is leading the future of snacking with iconic global and local brands such as Oreo, belVita, and LU biscuits; Cadbury Dairy Milk, Milka, and Toblerone chocolate; Sour Patch Kids candy; and Trident gum. Mondelēz International is a proud member of the Standard and Poor’s 500, Nasdaq 100, and Dow Jones Sustainability Index. Visit or follow the company on X (formerly Twitter) at

Rita’s Italian Ice & Frozen Custard opened its doors in Bensalem, PA, in 1984, and has been dedicated to spreading “Ice, Custard, Happiness!” ever since. Now, Rita’s is the largest Italian Ice concept in the world with over 550 shops. Guests around the world visit Rita’s to celebrate their everyday moments with freshly made cool treats in a fun-filled atmosphere. Known for its famous Italian Ice, made daily featuring real fruit, and signature Frozen Custard, Rita’s serves a taste of happiness with each delicious treat. For more information about Rita’s Italian Ice, please call 1-800-677-7482 or visit

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