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When Kelly Conklin received word Wednesday morning that his ice cream parlor was ranked No. 1 in the United States by TripAdvisor, he was surprised.

'In the U.S.?' the Island Creamery owner repeated over the phone while inside his shop located on Chincoteague.

'How about that,' he said after discovering the high honor for himself on the Internet.

The world's largest travel website announced this week that Island Creamery was first in a Top 10 list of ice cream parlors in the nation.

The results were based on TripAdvisor's annual summer travel survey of more than 2,500 U.S. respondents. Those surveyed also cited ice cream as their favorite summer food, outranking lobster and watermelon.

Coming in at No. 4 in Wednesday's ice cream parlor list was Woodside Farm Creamery of Hockessin, Delaware, which Conklin called another well-known ice cream parlor.

'It's quite an honor to be even mentioned in the same breath as some of these,' he said.

'It's humbling.'

The Island Creamery, which celebrates its 40th anniversary this summer, also came out on top in the Virginian-Pilot newspaper's, 'The 30 places to eat in Virginia before you die' feature article published March of this year.

'There are 36 reasons that the line at this ice cream shop sometimes stretches out the door and into the parking lot during the summer tourist season,' wrote Jim Haag and Lorraine Eaton. 'That's the number of ice creams, sorbets and frozen yogurts tempting visitors.'

Conklin said he attributes the success of his ice cream shop to 'treating people right and being consistent day in and day out.'

'Hopefully it's a good product at a reasonable price sold by friendly people in a comfortable environment,' Conklin said.

The island business owner also views his shop as a staple experience of Chincoteague vacationers.

'I think we've become a part of people's vacation expectations. They don't want it to change,' he said.

Judging by Island Creamery's 868 reviews and 5 out of 5 bubbles on TripAdvisor, visitors certainly like the ice cream shop the way it has always been since 1975.

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