New Kid on the Block; PCMI Installs New Ice Machine - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

New Kid on the Block; PCMI Installs New Ice Machine in Panama City

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Panama City Marine Institute has installed an automatic ice machine on their property in Panama City. The Polarmatic 10,000 is the new kid on the block in Panama City.

The machine made in the USA cranks out ice in cold fashion.

"It's really good ice," said Norm Gulkis, who says hot weather isn't the motivation for the new ice maker.  

"The real reason is we have a very high success rate for getting kids back in the community and the money that comes in for those kids isn't enough," said Gulkis. "We have a goal of raising 20% of the cost ourselves."

The truth is raising money for non-profit organizations is tough work.

Gulkis is hoping the ice machine will help to bring in a steady flow of revenue. One that couldn't be in a more perfect location.

"The boat ramp is one of the busiest in Bay County," said Gulkis. "It is a convenience for people going boating and fishing and also people from the Cove area and the condominiums around here.

"We think this is a really good place to market ice."

Even in the dead heat of July the ice never melts inside the machine. In fact, it's kept at an ice cold 24 degrees so when it comes out -- its a temperature that is hard to refuse.

"And it never gets below freezing so you never get any mold or any germs that can grow in there," said Gulkis. "It's too cold for them and it's the only machine on the market that we know of that does that."

And the best part is more bang for your buck. Instead of a 16 pound of ice, PCMI is giving customers a couple pounds more.

"It's going to a non-profit we figured we'll give them 18 pounds and it's kind of like we are going to give you a little bit more and you are going to help us with the kids here."

"We don't really believe in begging for money. We believe in earning it and with this ice machine we can do that."

Gulkis hopes to get the last of his permits and have the machine in full service by noon Wednesday just in time for the 4th of July holiday.