PopCycle Goes International
By: Kate Powers | 20 June, 2013 | 3432 Views
Need help cooling off this summer? How about a gourmet Pop with locally grown ingredients?
With the recent long stretch of sunny days and hot temperatures in South Central Alaska, it seems like everyone in Anchorage has flocked to the trails, lakes and parks to enjoy the midnight sun. Kait Reiley and Millie (her bike) have been right there with a constant supply of delicious frozen Pops to keep them cool.
You can usually find Kait peddling (and pedaling) downtown, near the Coastal Trail or Westchester Lagoon. Most Saturdays, PopCycle sets up shop at the Spenard Farmers Market. This Saturday, June 22, is International Day at the Spenard Farmers Market. PopCycle will feature three creative international flavors: Thai Iced Tea, Hibiscus and Cucumber Mojito.
Kait is proud to offer Alaskans Pops that are made from high quality sustainably produced ingredients. Her grandparents were pioneers of the tree reforestation in Michigan during the early 20th century and her time spent there is a constant influence on her business. She strives to run PopCycle in a way that earlier generations would be proud of, from how she grows the ingredients in the Pops to how she delivers the product to her customers.
“All waste that can be is either composted or recycled. All the compost happiness goes back into the garden where I grow ingredients for the Pops. Biking is not just a novel way to get around, but it ensures that I am keeping my carbon footprint as small as I can.”
The flavors that Popcycle offers are often determined by what’s in season. Her very first batch was made with frozen rhubarb from a backyard patch in Anchorage. Kait’s recent experiment of Lemon Ginger Mint went so well that she will likely bring it back later this summer. Other unique crowd pleasers include key lime pie, latte, hibiscus and Nutella (Nutella? My dreams have come true). You can follow Popcycle on Facebook and find out where the Pops are on any given sunny day.
This spring Kait started a Kickstarter campaign to crowdfund a mobile trailer to allow her to increase production and make Pops on her own schedule, rather than in someone else’s space. Her campaign was a success. Kait is now the proud owner of Bitsy, her aptly named trailer.
“It is a wonderful feeling to meet the faces behind the names of the people who backed me on Kickstarter. I do a little happy jump every time someone comes to redeem their bright green voucher. It says, ‘You’re awesome. Have a Pop.’ It is the people who eat the Pops that make it worthwhile and rewarding.”
While Kait likes the creative side of creating new flavors and making the Pops, she reiterates that the people are what make PopCycle rewarding. “The guy yesterday on the steps of the federal building who gave me the most enthusiastic thumbs up ever because he didn’t want to stop eating his pop, or the girl at PrideFest who was literally bouncing when she saw me coming. It’s really the people who eat the Pops that make it worthwhile. The community makes it amazing.”
PopCycle will feature three delicious international flavors at the Spenard Farmers Market this Saturday. Look for Thai Iced Tea, Hibiscus and Cucumber Mojito. The Spenard Farmers Market is proud to celebrate International Day Saturday June 22nd. Join us under the windmill for this Alaska summer solstice, with international cuisine and diverse food and craft vendors from cultures around the world! The 2013 Spenard Farmers Market is every Saturday, from May 18th through September 28th, under the windmill in the parking lot of Chilkoot Charlie’s at W. 26th and Spenard Road. The market hours are from 9am-2pm. The Spenard Farmers’ Market is a volunteer run community market featuring fresh Alaska grown and caught food, locally grown plants, and handmade arts and crafts.
Kate Powers, Co-Founder
Despite having her easy bake oven confiscated from her for questionable experiments, Kate Powers still convinced her Dad to let her continue to bake and cook without recipes. She loves cooking meals for her friends and family, she particularly loves cooking Latin American cuisine, especially Central American and Spanish food where she has been lucky enough to live and study. Kate has a particular interest in immigration and refugee resettlement issues, as well as farm and labor rights. She can make perfect duck egg omelettes, just ask her about it.