The Webber brothers returned to the Blackfeet Reservation in 2012 looking for work. Isaiah was returning from military tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, his younger brother, Ian, was home from college for the summer. They faced slim prospects as the Montana reservation’s unemployment rate hovered around 69%.
After months of job searching, the Webber family created their own opportunity: the Kool Breeze Ice Cream Truck.
The boys converted a passenger van into a mobile vending truck, while their mother, Susan, used her accounting expertise to craft a business plan.
Kool Breeze was quickly embraced by their community. The Blackfeet Tribal
Council provided a matching grant to help them get started. The ice cream truck was an immediate hit, selling out their inventory week after week for
three consecutive summer seasons. As the business expanded each year, Ian gaining recognition around town, where he is affectionately known as “Ice Cream Man.”
In a region with few Native-owned businesses, Kool Breeze serves as a shining example of entrepreneurial achievement.
The film has received support from the Center for Native American Youth at the Aspen Institute, and Gathr Films, a technology-based specialty theatrical distributor for documentaries and issues-oriented films.
The film is part of Drobis’ larger, decade-long project, Grown Up West, which focuses on positive stories about young people on the Blackfeet Reservation in northwestern Montana. The project has been featured in the High Country News, Yahoo Global News and the UK Daily Mail.
It is streaming on Amazon Prime and won best indigenious film in the Flathead International Film Festival.
"The Ice Cream Man" was selected to be screened at the 2018 Smithsonian Native Cinema Showcase in Santa Fe, New Mexico.