Remember the dismay on Charlie Bucket’s face when he watched the news reports of other children finding golden tickets to Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory? Well, he wasn’t sad for long because he eventually got his golden ticket and entered a “world of pure imagination” with the purple-suited Wonka. Obviously, that story is a work of fiction. Nothing like that could happen in real life, right? Wrong! But, instead of winning a trip to tour a candy factory that could possibly maim or disfigure you for life, the winner of this contest gets free ice cream for life. Kind of a better prize, don’t you think?
Who might be giving away this wonderful prize, you might wonder? McDonald’s of all places. To ramp up excitement for National Ice Cream Day on July 16th, McDonald’s is giving away free vanilla soft serve cones all day long. All you need to do to get a free cone is use the McDonald’s app and download the Free Vanilla Cone offer. This deal is only available from 2pm until 5pm so don’t think they’re going to hand you a free frozen treat for breakfast or late night. That’s not going to happen.
Free ice cream for one day is good, but free ice cream for the rest of your life? That’s the ultimate. To make this dream a reality, one lucky customer is going to win the “Golden Arches Cone,” a (literal) gold cone that will unlock the soft serve machine to you for life (when it’s working…). But, to get free vanilla soft serve for the rest of your days, you have to use the app (the same offer you used to get your free cone). It’s not as if you can just walk into the restaurant and be handed a gold cone. You have to play the game to get the prize. In this case, the game includes showing a clerk your phone and hoping against hope that your order will come in the coveted cone that all other cones aspire to be. Okay, so maybe you can just walk into the restaurant and be handed a gold cone.
Even if you don’t win, at least you get to eat free ice cream that isn’t full of hard-to-spell chemicals. Following similar changes to McNuggets, McDonald’s soft serve contains no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives as of May. “The positive changes we’ve made to our menu, including our vanilla soft serve, show we are fully committed to continuing to raise the bar at McDonald’s,” Darci Forrest, senior director of menu innovation at McDonald’s said in a press release. “We are thanking all our guests with free vanilla soft serve on National Ice Cream Day. And we are excited to see which lucky individual will be handed a special Golden Arches Cone, signifying free soft serve for life!”