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A new twist in Rotterdam

Guilderland woman with soft serving past opens ice cream shop

The Grandstand owner Christine Ramundo dips a soft serve ice cream cone for some extra flavor on Tuesday, Aug. 7.

The Grandstand owner Christine Ramundo dips a soft serve ice cream cone for some extra flavor on Tuesday, Aug. 7. Photo by John Purcell.

— Serving up a picturesque soft serve ice cream cone isn’t as easy as it looks, according to one new ice cream shop owner.

“It’s all in the wrist,” Christine Ramundo said with a laugh. “Everybody thinks it is easy, but it isn’t easy to twist a cone.”

Some people, Ramundo said, clearly have the twisting skills hardwired, but others take months of practice to, well, continue to reach less than desirable results.

“My mother started in May and by the end of June she still couldn’t twist it,” Ramundo said.

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The former Highbridge Twist in Rotterdam was bought by Christine Ramundo, of Guilderland, and renamed the drive-in restaurant The Grandstand, which also features batting cages.

Ramundo was 15 years old when she started working at Kurver Kreme on Central Avenue in Albany and continued working at the ice cream shop until she was 24, when motherhood took her focus. Then, she took a call from friend who owns Kurver asking her to come back and twist some more cones.

“I’ve done ice cream almost my whole entire life,” she said. “I like seeing the people’s reaction when they get the ice cream and the little kids’ faces when you hand them a cone.”

For the past six years she worked at Kurver, but when the ice cream drive-in Highbridge Twist in Rotterdam was up for sale, she couldn’t pass up the opportunity to run her own shop. Even as a 15-year-old, she could see herself in soft serve for many years to come.

“I didn’t think I would be owning my own store, but I liked it,” she said. “I really enjoyed what I did.”

She said she enjoyed the fast paced environment along with getting to meet new people.

Since the transition was quick, there haven’t been many changes at Highbridge Twist yet — other than the name. Along with her family, Ramundo settled on The Grandstand, playing off the batting cages that are on site along with the ice cream stand.

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