The colors blue and yellow may seem like two ordinary, primary colors, but if you ask one locally owned business in Western New York, they will tell you that it means something more. 

A local ice cream shop put their own unique spin on these two colors in a way to help them give back to its community in a unique way.

PJ COOLS is located at 6160 Transit Rd in Depew, NY, and they have just opened for their 9th season, according to co-owner Joe Mancini. 

Joe owns the ice cream shop with his wife, Paula, hence how they got the name “PJ” COOLS. The two of them know that a local business survives based on the support from their local community, and the Mancini family is so grateful for that support that they try to give back whenever they can. 

That’s why PJ COOLS holds special events throughout the year, including one on March 21st which is globally recognized as World Down Syndrome Day. 

Last week, PJ COOLS offered blue and yellow cones to celebrate the uniqueness in Down Syndrome and spread awareness, and the proceeds went towards the local Down Syndrome Parents Group of Western New York. 

"Every year, we hold an event here at the shop to raise awareness and help raise some money to go towards the Down Syndrome Parents Group of Western New York," Mancini said. 

Mancini told us that the cause is especially important to him because he has a niece who has Down Syndrome. 

“Our niece has Down Syndrome, so it’s a special place in our heart,” Joe Mancini said. “But to be quite honest with you, we just always wanted to help people.”

“If I didn’t have a family member that had Down Syndrome, I would still do [this event].”

Tons of people stopped by PJ COOLS for World Down Syndrome Day, including Princess Belle and the Wolverine, who you may notice in the pictures below that they are wearing the blue and yellow colors that are associated with Down Syndrome. 

At the end of the day, PJ COOLS was able to raise $798 that was entirely donated to the Down Syndrome Parents Group of Western New York. 

“We were able to raise $798,” Mancini said. “That included all of the blue and yellow treats that we sold that day and all of the proceeds from those treats went to the charity. Also, all of our employees graciously donated all of their tips that day as well, and we wrote a check for $321 for [World Down Syndrome Day] being on March 21.”

Mancini has multiple awareness events throughout the year, with the next event being planned for April 2nd in honor of World Autism Awareness Day, and one thing that is so cool about PJ COOLS is that they always donate the money right back into our local community. 

“Any money that we raise for any of those events, we donate to local [organizations],” Mancini said. 

“We’re local, we’re a family owned and operated business,” Mancini said. “We count on the local community to support us and keep us in business, so in turn, we want to do the same thing and keep these wonderful societies and organizations that are local…we want to make sure that we do the best we can to keep them going.” 

You can get an inside look of the ice cream shop below.

The next big event planned for PJ COOLS is on April 2nd, and a few special guests are planning to be there: Tinkerbell and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. 

You can find more details on their event for World Autism Awareness Day when you click here.  

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