As I write this they’re talking about more snow on the horizon for New Jersey. The wind is howling outside my window in this mid-January dead of winter.

Spring isn’t exactly right around the corner but it would be nice to have something to look forward to, wouldn’t it? Well here’s a sign of spring you can pin your hopes on.

hidden colorful pink and purple Easter eggs in tall uncut grass
Photo via Dewitt

There’s a brand new Rita’s Italian ice place being planned for New Jersey.

Rita’s is almost synonymous with spring in the Garden State. After all it’s Rita’s tradition on the first day of spring each year to give away free Italian ice. This is a tradition lasting over thirty years.

So where’s the new one going to be? If all works out, East Brunswick. is reporting plans are in the works for a Rita’s to move into a vacancy at Mid-State Mall. According to Rita’s website location page it would be the 24th location in the Garden State.

Photo via Google Maps
Photo via Google Maps

An application by the mall is in before the East Brunswick Planning Board. A hearing is scheduled for 7 p.m. on January 24.

The proposal calls for Rita’s to occupy part of the space left behind by New York Sports Club and some site changes like additional parking and an outdoor patio would be part of the ask.

Rita’s is going on its 40-year anniversary this May after being started in Bensalem, Pennsylvania by a former Philadelphia firefighter named Bob Tumolo. He took his own mom’s homemade water ice (that’s what Philly calls it) and enhanced it for flavors and included real fruits. The business gets its name from his wife, Rita.

There are now over 600 Rita’s locations in 30 states. East Brunswick should soon have its own.

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Gallery Credit: Ryan Reichard

Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Jeff Deminski only.

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