The story behind 1808 Sneaux, a new snoball stand on Perkins Road

A new snoball stand is writing the next chapter of a history-filled property on Perkins Road. Old gasoline cans and 1960s signs for “Jim’s Firewood” left onsite point to some of the property’s backstory, but 1808 Perkins Road has been vacant for years. Now, 1808 Sneaux, a horse-trailer-turned-dessert-cart parked out front, has been bustling since its May 4 grand opening.  

Behind the counter, the staff drizzles a rainbow of syrups onto shaved ice. Hand-decorated cups mirror the doodled snoball signs dotted across the grounds. Families congregate around sunflower-yellow-painted picnic tables, and children draw freely with chalk on the concrete.  

The menu counts around 50 flavors, from Jim’s Honeydew Melon to Kayla’s Wedding Cake to Broussard’s Banana. Snoballs can be stuffed with ice cream or made sugar-free. Toppings include cheesecake bites, marshmallow fluff, candy, gummies, condensed milk, sprinkles, whipped cream, chocolate and caramel syrups and more. “Pupcones” are available at the pet-friendly spot, too.

Gabrielle McKellar, a full-time real-estate agent, stumbled upon the empty property on a leisurely bike ride and says she saw its potential. She credits the support of family, friends and an upbeat staff for helping her open and maintain the stand.

McKellar grew up on a farm in Purvis, Mississippi, a small town that as of 2022 had a population of less than 2,000. The eldest of nine children, she says the driving force in her life has always been family. Many of the flavor names, such as Hazel’s Blue Bubblegum, Sammy’s Strawberry and Nana’s Nectar, were inspired by her nieces, nephews and other family members.

1808 Sneaux owner Gabrielle McKellar

“I am forever grateful. There is nobody I love more than my family, siblings and parents,” McKellar says. “Some of those moments that I had on a picnic table in Purvis, Mississippi, (surrounded by) horses and horses—I want to bring that to the city.” 

McKellar says the response from the community has been gratifying. Even for yesterday’s shoot, dozens of supporters showed up to be included in the photo, and local shops like Edit by LBP and Varsity Sports helped provide outfits and shoes.

There is space for more tenants on the property, too, once the building is restored. McKellar says there is room for two more businesses, and envisions a small barbershop onsite.

1808 Sneauxballs owner Gabrielle McKellar with staff and customers from around the neighborhood

“(This is) meant to be a place to put your dream out there,” McKellar says of the property plans, adding, “You paint a few picnic tables yellow, and families just flock. They hang out and catch up on life. I want it to be a second home to the community.” 

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