Homes chool Entrepreneurs
An interview with the creators of Discovery Ice Cream
By Sam Woodall
Do you remember the feeling you have
when you begin reading a well written
book, that by the time you reach the end of
the first page you are already “into” the
story, immersed in the adventure and just
knowing “this is going to be good”?
When we pushed open the front door of
the Discovery Ice Cream store, that same
feeling compelled us to step on in. We had
heard about the store from friends, and
recently we met with one of the founders
and CEO of Discovery, Allan Jones. Begun
in 2006 as a dream in the minds of two
homeschooling dads, Discovery Ice Cream
has become a highlight in the ongoing
downtown revitalization of Kingsport,
Tennessee, but more importantly, a training
ground and business school for enterprising homeschoolers.
TOS: What a delightful place you have
built here! Can you tell us how you came to
be involved with this work?
Allan Jones: “Work” is correct! But none
of it would be of any value without the
blessing of the Lord God over many years
and through many other people, as well.
However, for what you see here, the
specific idea began two and a half years
ago. We started with the germ of an idea
that I had about an ice cream machine that
would let kids design their own treat. My
partner, Jack Rutledge, and I desired to
impact our community with the truths of
Scripture to a greater extent and beyond
the lives of our own families.
We were living in New Hampshire, and
I was working for a Fortune 500 company
as the Director of Innovation. I was
charged with thinking beyond the present,
exploring beyond the obvious and status
quo, trying to envision a future made better
by the products our company would
produce. Each workday I had a forty-five-minute commute from southern New
Hampshire to Cambridge, Massachusetts.
That was an hour and a half each day of
uninterrupted time to pray, to meditate, and
We obey that command . . . . We think of it as two
scoops of smiling Truth served in a waffle cone!