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Havoc – Free ” Ice Cream” crazy tonight – Baskin Robbins

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KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysia went ‘ice cream crazy’ tonight when thousands stood in line at Baskin Robbins outlets nationwide to redeem their free scoop of ice cream.

The free ice cream initiative, dubbed the Impian Emas Negara project, was initiated by Media Prima and Baskin Robbins to thank Malaysians for their unwavering support for the Malaysian Olympics contingent in London.

Malaysians from all walks of life began queuing at the Baskin Robbins outlets well before the scheduled 8pm ice cream distribution time in anticipation of the free goodies.

At the Bangsar outlet, a line began forming outside the shop in Jalan Telawi 3 about 7pm. The restaurant staff had closed the store at 7pm to enable them to prepare for the massive onslaught of people waiting for their free ice cream.

Baskin Robbins staff interviewed by Malaysian Digest expressed their glee at the opportunity to be involved in the project. One employee, who wished to be identified as Tiara, 29, said each branch was allocated 1,000 coupons which can be redeemed for a single ‘junior scoop’ of free ice cream.

“Judging by the crowd, it’s possible that we’ll run out of coupons even before the 10pm cut-off time,” she quipped.

By 7.30pm, the crowd had begun to swell outside the store. The atmosphere appeared cheerful as light-hearted banter was evident among those waiting in line.

Harjinder Singh, 47, had brought his family of four to queue for the free ice cream. Proudly declaring himself a massive fan of badminton ace Datuk Lee Chong Wei, he said the move was a great gesture to show support for Malaysia’s Olympics heroes as well as the fans.

“I’m here both for the cause, and of course the free ice cream. It’s a great way to bring Malaysians together. I wouldn’t mind queuing up again for a second round if I could,” he joked.

Redzuan Salleh, 24, said he heard of the free ice cream initiative from a friend and decided to take part.

“It’s a great way to unify people and at the same time thank our athletes and regular Malaysians,” he said.

Some readily admitted that they were there purely for the freebie. A woman identified only as June said she was deciding between the outlet in Mid Valley Megamall and Bangsar before plumping for the latter in anticipation of better traffic.

However, not all in the vicinity were after the freebies. Crowds of onlookers were also evident outside the store, content with just observing the goings-on.

Nurul, 28, said she was just amused at the antics of the general public.

“The queue is ridiculous, so I’m just content to just stay here and watch. I’m certainly not going in there; I hate queues,” she said.

The crowd eventually thinned out at 10pm but as there were about 300 coupons left, the staff decided to continue serving ice cream until they ran out.

Meanwhile, Malaysians also took to Twitter and Facebook to update each other and post photos of the long queues outside the Baskin Robbins outlets elsewhere. Massive queues were seen in Damansara Uptown, One Utama shopping centre as well as Alamanda Putrajaya.

The Impian Emas Negara initiative, launched in May, had initially pledged to only provide free ice cream if a Malaysian athlete clinched an Olympic gold medal.

However, Media Prima yesterday announced that they were going ahead with the project anyway as a means of recognition towards Malaysians who had supported the Malaysian Olympians.

— mD