Ale Delgado and Hayden Coleman are anything but your average college students. They are the entrepreneurial minds behind a new project and business called Moovers and Shakers.
Moovers and Shakers is the brainchild of both Delgado and Coleman. Each one has a story of how they came to love soda parlors and milkshakes, but how they both realized each other’s love is an interesting coincidence.
“We were walking out of class and Hayden pointed over to the BLVD and was like, ‘You know what would be awesome to put in there? A soda shop.’ I was like ‘No way! That is what I have been thinking about all class,” said Delgado.
After much thought and discussion about the vacant student business space near Buzzy’s, the pair decided they wanted to make this dream a reality—with some adaptation. They found out about Belmont’s business plan competition and had three weeks to design their proposal.
“Essentially we just got in contact with the Entrepreneurship department, and we were like, ‘Hey, what do we need to do to be a part of this thing?’” Coleman said.
Things turned out well for the group, as Moovers and Shakers earned second place and a $2,000 prize in the competition.
In addition to using the prize, their savings and a loan, the duo raised took advantage of a Kickstarter campaign to raise an additional $5,000 for funding the truck. Kickstarter is a website that features projects and ideas from people across the country. The website allows visitors to donate money to a cause, but the cause will only receive the pledges if the organizers reach their entire goal.
Moovers and Shakers needed a commitment of $5,000 from donors by April 24. They reached the goal in the final hours before the deadline.
“We are pretty freaking excited,” Coleman said about the campaign. “We’re super stoked about it. I don’t think it’s fully set in yet.”
Moovers and Shakers will be much more than a conventional ice cream truck. Coleman and Delgado said they plan to offer the basic flavors with changing weekly specials.
Their normal menu will consist of two “moovers,” which are shakes. One vanilla moover is called the Thunderbird, and a chocolate one is called the Impala.
There will also be two “shakers,” aka floats. The Coca-Cola shaker is the Cadillac, and the root beer is the Corvette. They want their products to be premium quality.
“We want to get the crowd as involved as we can,” Coleman said.
They plan to use social media sites and other outlets to allow their fans and enthusiasts to suggest new flavors, places to stop and anything else that seems relevant. They also want to encourage their fans to give them feedback on how they are doing.
The two want to make Moovers and Shakers something special for the Nashville community and create something unique and fun.
“We want to promote the community vibe in Nashville,” Coleman said.
Both said they would never let Moovers and Shakers become a franchise, and they want it to stay local even after they are gone. Without those, Delgado said, “I think the spirit would be lost.”
Moovers and Shakers would normally be in business only during the summer, early fall and late spring months with exceptions for special events and catering opportunities. Since weather affects demand, this seems to be the most financially viable option for them right now. Milkshakes aren’t likely to be a popular item in February in Nashvillle.
Delgado and Coleman are both big music fans. They’ve discussed getting Nashville and Belmont artists involved in making a soundtrack for their truck, along with participating in the mix tape that one can win from donating to their Kickstarter.
They are also considering setting up outdoor music venues so people can enjoy their cold treats and listen to music.
“We are around for people and artists who would like some exposure,” Delgado said.
After graduation, Delgado and Coleman plan to give the business back to Belmont. They say the university is their biggest supporter and there is no better way to show them their gratitude than to give it back.
None of this is possible without a truck, and the two have been looking diligently for one that could house Moovers and Shakers.
“We have a few contenders,” Delgado said.
Both said they hope to have things up and running by May. They are trying to work it out so they can have a large opening bash on Dead Day that would feature live music and other fun activities.
A Moovers and Shakers truck isn’t yet on the road, but the plans have gained quite a following on Facebook. They have also been featured in articles from media outlets like the Nashville Scene, Nashvillest, the Tennessean and Eat. Drink. Smile.