LaPlace Frostop reopens to community; owner says fallen mug will be restored

Published 8:06 am Thursday, September 16, 2021

LAPLACE — LaPlace Frostop reopened to customers Sept. 15, instilling a sense of hope for St. John the Baptist Parish residents yearning for normalcy in the aftermath of Hurricane Ida.

While Ida’s winds knocked down the iconic neon mug that has been a landmark in St. John Parish since 1958, the storm could not keep the multi-generational business closed for long. LaPlace Frostop is back to doing what it does best — serving the community, just as it has for the past 63 years on Highway 61.

Hours are from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

“This is just what we do,” third generation owner Terry Toler said. “People are not only out there, but they are talking to each other. They are happy to see each other.”

Toler was pleased to present an almost full menu on the first day back, including classic Lot-of-Burgers, fries, ice cream, shakes and more. Canned soft drinks are being served while St. John Parish remains under a boil water advisory.

The restaurant currently has no phone service or Internet. Orders are taken at the walk-up window, and only cash is being accepted at this time.

Business was steady throughout the day Wednesday and shows no sign of slowing. The LaPlace Frostop cooks are serving the community while simultaneously dealing with their own damage at home and feeding linemen who have worked diligently to restore power in the parish.

Frostop has a long history at 411 E. Airline Highway in LaPlace. The business was opened in 1958 by Toler’s grandfather, Morris Terry. Toler has been with the business alongside her parents, second generation owners Jimmie and Evelyn Toler, since graduating from college in 1993.

The Toler family lives near the restaurant, just across Airline Highway, and they were able to check on LaPlace Frostop shortly after Hurricane Ida passed.

“Luckily, our houses were fine, minimal damage. I was fairly certain we had lost the mug. With the way the weather was that night, you knew what you were going to wake up to find,” Toler said.

Sure enough, she stood by the credit union building on Airline Highway and saw the mug in the parking lot across the street.

Yet, LaPlace Frostop fared well during the storm, especially when compared to others who had much worse damage. Toler said the roof lifted up in the very back, leading to water damage in the dining room. The restaurant had already been functioning as a walk-up diner during the COVID-19 pandemic, and Toler said the dining space is currently serving as storage to replace the shed that blew away during Hurricane Ida. Everything will be repaired, including the iconic frosted mug.

“The mug will be restored and will be put back up. It’s just not going to happen immediately,” Toler said.

It wouldn’t be the first time the mug has been restored. While the insides and handle are original to the 1950s, the mug was redone in aluminum in 2007.

Toler added, “I was surprised how hurt all the people were that the mug was gone. It’s coming back! Don’t worry about that.”

Hearing about other longtime businesses such as Connie’s Grill and The Donut Hole closing breaks Toler’s heart and makes her realize the impacts of Hurricane Ida will be felt in St. John Parish for years to come.

“It really puts the fallen mug in perspective,” she said. “We’re happy to be back serving the community.”

More information about Frostop can be found at https://www.restaurantji.com/la/laplace/frostop-drive-in-restaurant-/