Cherry Smash Ice Cream Parlour Will Take You Back In Time

Cherry Smash Ice Cream Parlour – Interior Photos by Adam Baron Photo

Originally published in 2012

By: Sharon Aron Baron

If you haven’t heard about the new ice cream parlor, Cherry Smash, through a friend or Facebook, then your life must be pretty “vanilla” because this is the place that everyone is talking about.   Their grand opening was on February 24th, however, word was out way before then about this amazing ice cream soda fountain that’s like stepping inside a time machine.

There are so many antiques to look at in the shop that many people just stand and stare, taking in everything. Where else are you going to find an antique fire truck, an old style barber shop complete with barber chair, barber pole, and multicolored hair tonics in bottles?   Parents are seen explaining to their children what many of the antiques are, such as the old gas pumps and cigarette machines while they feast on decadent sundaes and milkshakes.

Cherry Smash was created by Coral Springs residents Sal and Sheila Bellassai.   They also have a sister store in Hayesville, North Carolina where unlike its unexceptional storefront in Coral Springs, the Hayesville location, called “Best Lil Ice Cream Parlor” was converted from a general store into a restaurant and ice cream parlor and includes a cozy fireplace.  Sheila spends several months out of the year managing it and tourists love visiting the area when they go to the mountains to see the fall leaves change or just to go fishing.

Sal and Sheila also love collecting antiques and first started collecting Lionel Trains,  then moved on to other items.  They have been collecting antiques for about 50 years and have purchased many of the items found at Cherry Smash from  various auctions and flea markets around North Carolina.

Cherry Smash is located at 8000 Wiles Road in Coral Springs, FL 33067 954-346-0999

Sheila and Sal Bellassai

Coral Springs Commissioners Vince Boccard and Larry Vignola with Mayor Roy Gold at the grand opening

Save-A-Life Program

“Swallow your pride, call for a free ride!  If you are too drunk to drive, call Sal’s Towing.  We will tow you and your vehicle FREE to your home in Broward County 24 hours a day 365 day a year, provided you call BEFORE being topped by a law enforcement officer or being involved in a traffic accident.”

Cherry Smash owner, Sal Bellassai has been the owner of Sal’s Towing since 1957 where his company provides services for various cities and police departments.  Since 1981 they are the only company that has offered the Save-A-Life Program for Drunk Drivers.  “Not just on holidays or on weekends,” says Sal, “But 365 days a year.” Sal says to take one of his towing cards while you are in Cherry Smash and give it to someone.  Hopefully they will never need it, but this could be a life-saver if they ever do.


About Sharon Aron Baron

Sharon Aron Baron Sharon Aron Baron is the Editor of Talk Media and writer for Coral Springs Talk. CST was created in 2012 to provide News, Views and Entertainment for the residents of Coral Springs, Parkland and the rest of South Florida.


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  • ash954

    Thank you Cherry Smash! I love your ice cream especially the Mounds! It is so delicious and your place is so beautiful and fun! I wish you had more places to sit because it get so busy sometimes. I can’t wait to come back and have more yummy ice cream!

  • PizzaMan82

    Thanks for the tweet about this place. I will have to make a trip over to check it out this weekend. Do they sell any of these antiques here? These look amazing and looks like they spent sometime collecting them. Looks like the Jacksons of Coral Springs.


    • lerose55

      I guess anything is for sale at the right price ( LOL.)
      I don’t think they sell the antiques.

  • AB

    I saw this ad last weekend, we are going to go there this weekend, the pictures are fantastic with their antiques can’t wait to see them in person. Ice-Cream is my dietary weakness.

  • Saelavi

    GOSH SHARON, I can’t believe you left out such important information, about the owner SALVATORE BELLASSAI. There ARE people who want to know the good and the bad about who they patronize, whether it be a person or business. Google the names, see for yourself. This Sun Sentinel newspaper article was forwarded to me, surprised you don’t know.

    4 Charged In Auto Theft Ring Stolen Cars Stripped, Parts Sold, Police Say

    |By SALLIE JAMES, Staff Writer

    An Oakland Park towing service owner and three others were arrested on Wednesday on charges of operating the largest “steal to order“ chop shop in Broward County in the past 20 years, police said.

    The arrests came after a 14-month investigation during which police seized parts of 60 cars from Sal`s Towing in Oakland Park, Sal`s Used Auto Parts in Pompano Beach, and Southern Auto Parts and Recycling in Pompano Beach, Fort Lauderdale police Sgt. James O`Hagan said.
    Those arrested were Salvatore Bellassai, 44, of Lauderdale Lakes, owner of Sal`s Towing and Sal`s Used Auto Parts; his brother, Carmen Bellassai, 45, of Parkland, manager of Sal`s Used Auto Parts; Sam Parisi, 56, of Boca Raton, owner of Southern Auto Parts and Recycling; and Allen Lippen, 44, of Coral Springs, an employee at Sal`s Used Auto Parts.

    All four were charged with racketeering, conspiracy to commit racketeering, and a total of 134 other first- and second-degree felony charges, including dealing in stolen property.

    The suspects were booked into the Broward County Jail and had not been released late Wednesday night. Bail for Parisi, CARMEN BELLASSAI and Lippen was set at $492,000 each. Bond for SALVATORE BELLASSAI was set at $255,000.

    • Trace

      There is more to that story than the newspaper will tell you, that is all I will go into. Sal took the fall for others that committed the crimes back then and has never recovered from it. He does not give back to the community to try and make amends as it was never truly him that did anything wrong. He gives so much simply because that is the person he is. His Save-A-Life program was started because an employee of his had a baby that was killed in a car accident by a drunk driver so he felt obligated to try and help with the problem in any way he could. Reading articles on the internet is not going to give you all the information you need to know. Thank you Sharon for this wonderful article!

    • Tubbs

      perhaps all the free scoops of ice cream she received made her overlook the skeletons?

    • Evan Snow

      If you make some bad choices in your life and get into trouble how long does it take for you to be considered a equal member of the community?
      You’re posting info from the mid 1980’s and a google search shows that you’ve got a Bellassai hate site. That’s what you do with your life? Spend all your time spreading negativity about the Bellassai family?
      What a miserable, empty and depressing life you must have. Have you ever thought about using your time and energy to do something positive instead of just reposting a 1988 newspaper article about some stolen Buick Regals?

    • Larry

      I worked for Sal’s Towing in the `80’s. I can tell you, first-hand, Sal Bellassai is a wonderful person as is his wife, Sheila. I never knew Carmen as that was during the troubled times mentioned and Carmen was sort-of persona-non-grata. Sal and Sheila went above and beyond, by far, to help me with a terrible time in my life and I saw them do so much for so many other people as to be uplifted by their kindness and generosity. Both are people who are willing to overlook the faults of others so long as those others are willing to work on them for the betterment of their own lives and, hopefully, the lives of those around them. They are people who are fiercely loyal to their family and as loving a pair of parents and grandparents as one could ask for. They do value love, life, honesty (yep, that’s what I saw and lived with while there for several years), loyalty, family of course and giving. Whether you’re talking about the S.A.L. program (which was heartfelt, I don’t care what any nut says) or the annual pumpkin sale in Wilton Manors or the rain barrel in Sal’s office that was there for employees or visitors to make donations to a local charity that supported abused children (they’re big on children) they were, and I’m sure still are, big on giving. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not stupid and know we all have faults and, well, they’re human, too. However, it was never a goal in their lives to exploit their faults or the faults of others (although Sal wasn’t above messing with you if you were messing up and flaunting your own faults—I know). They were good people who helped me and many others without ever asking for any “favors” in return. I saw them as better people than myself and looked up to them.

  • I appreciate the information, but this story is from 1988. Surely, you must have a bone to pick with this family in order to bring up these skeletons from their past.

    I stand by their ice cream.

    I’m sure in 24 years, they have made good back to our community through their Save-a-Live program that offers free rides for drunk drivers.

    • Saelavi

      Well , Sharon, you are entitled to that opinion, and although I am not a family member, I know of people who were harmed, regardless of the time that has passed. Good ice cream won’t make them feel any better.

      • carl


  • Scott

    “I’m sure in 24 years, they have made good back to our community through their Save-a-Live program that offers free rides for drunk drivers.” You’re sure? How are you sure? You didn’t share that with us.

    This is a fantastic follow-up story. I’d love to hear a criminal to solid citizen story – and I would support that person. But lets hear that story. If you are sure that his past 24 years have been good — please document it for us.

  • Karma

    I went to high school with these hooligans (the Bellassai brothers) and it was just a matter of time that they would be sent to jail. They were bad apples back then in the ’80’s and they probably have pretty long rap sheets. Their dad may be a decent guy but what was his role in all of the above?

  • B Rowe Cerasini

    I also went to school with the Bellassai brothers, Sal and Carmen, in the late 50’s early 60’s and thought they were pretty decent fellows. I’d venture a guess some people did some things a week ago, much less 20 plus years ago, they wish they hadn’t done but you can’t unring a bell!! I don’t believe I know anyone without a skeleton or 2. How they are living their lives now is far more important.

  • Karma

    Nope, not the same brothers if you’re talking about high school. These guys went to BA in the late 70’s. Sure, people can make amends, but they definitely were bad kids.

    • FLPD

      I cant believe the city of coral springs would even do business with these jokers, im sure theres a lot of free ice cream being handed out,, {to the right people}..
      That’s how the game is played.. CROOKS!!!!!!!!

  • B Rowe Cerasini

    I went to school with the Sr Bellassai brothers…. Ft Lauderdale High School..Boyd Anderson didn’t even exist when we were growing up in Ft Lauderdale. I believe Cherry Smash is owned by the father and mother, Sal & Sheila Bellassai….not the sons……

  • B Rowe Cerasini

    sadly, I believe that Sal & Sheila lost a son several years ago in a motorcycle accident…….no parent should ever have to bury a child!!!!

    • lerose55

      I can sympathize with the parents, losing a child is not suppose to happen, you never get over it, not one day will pass that you don’t think about them. I loss 2 sons, I know.

  • big dan

    Cherry smash is just a front for these people , its sad to say but its all about money if you payoff the right people you get away with the crime . make 5 million a year for 8 years running a chop shop and spend 500 thousand getting off sounds like a deal to me. And the two sons are the ones you went to school with in the 80’s sal jr is the one that passed away and johnny is still working at sals towing if you call what he does working hes kinda mentally deficient guess thats why sal passed him over to take over the company.
    And the save a life program is a kind gesture but in fact its just a tax write off…

  • lerose55

    Were fairly new to the area, so don’t know anything about the son’s Towing Business or the family’s illegal problems.
    We did go to Cherry Smash, we loved eating the ice-cream (my weakness), but I loved all the antiques, it was nice to see some of the stuff from our childhood, laughing & talking about it & what we were doing at the time. It must have taken a long time to acquire all that stuff. I would go back again.

  • That guy Sal is a good guy. He’s been friends with my father Pasefika or Freddy from the Mai-Kai as he knows him for years. He sponsored my pops softball teams and has done a lot for the City of Oakland Park. Don’t hate so much folks!

    • Mr D

      Sal is so crooked he has to turn sideways to fart!!!

  • diane

    Love the place, my grandkids enjoy it too!

  • JoePluggs

    Sounds like a great place run by some great people. I’d love to come and check it out and see all the antiques and grab a milkshake. And the Save-A-Life-Program is really something else. Sounds like some real stand up people.

  • Hazel Gillett

    OMG! This is soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo cool!