Mr. B’s Coffee and Ice Cream
Mr. B’s story of courage, chasing dreams, and inspiring others is exactly the type of legacy that continues to build Beloit. Mr. Bobby Wilson, now in his 70s, was born in Mississippi and raised in Milwaukee, WI. While in his 20s he heard that Fairbanks Morse was hiring and that’s where his Beloit story begins.
Mr. Wilson moved to Beloit and got a job at Fairbanks Morse that he had heard about while in Milwaukee and shortly after that, landed a job at the Beloit Corporation. While getting settled in and getting more familiar with Beloit, he realized there was great potential to start his own business and so he did just that by creating Mr. B’s Limos. He operated his transportation business for 19 years in the same location we have grown to know and love as Mr. B’s Coffee and Ice Cream. However, driving limousines wasn’t the only business this entrepreneur at heart had been working on in his office space.
It was 20 years ago when Mr. Wilson bought a bag of cracklins while visiting Memphis and it gave him an idea. He remembered growing up in Mississippi making cracklins at home with his family and thought he should make them himself so the people of Beloit could taste a favorite snack of his childhood. And so, TJ’s Gourmet Snack Foods was born. Named TJ after his grandson who is now 28 years old, the brand thrives by producing and selling cracklins and pork rinds. The company’s products can be found in stores throughout the Stateline area and in cities as far away as Milwaukee.
In 2007 the office space that was used to run the limousine service was converted into Mr. B’s Coffee and Ice Cream where Wilson’s wife has been cooking up home style comfort food for 15 years. Having relocated here from the Philippines, Mrs. Wilson takes great pride in her homemade Philippine egg rolls. Although it’s the only Philippine delicacy at Mr. B’s, it proves to be a local favorite as one of the most ordered items on the menu.
Mr. Wilson says, “Beloit has been good to us” as he shared his children attended Beloit schools and he enjoyed raising them here. “I feel blessed to be able to do what I do,” he stated. “The community gives us their support and offering affordable home cooked meals is our way of giving back to the community.” At Mr. B’s you can find all your favorite breakfast and lunch meals, but he says the burgers are the best in town and are a top seller. And you can’t order at Mr. B’s without choosing ice cream or a milk shake for dessert.
Mr. Wilson shares, “that even when life feels like it’s at its lowest point, you should never give up.” In 2014, as an amputee he was brutally stabbed which left him a double amputee. Even though he lost both of his legs, he knew “life was not over” and there was still much to be accomplished. Now Mr. Wilson gets around with two prosthetic legs, still delivers TJ’s Snacks, helps Mrs. Wilson run Mr. B’s, and this summer he looks forward to attending outdoor festivals and riding his three-wheel bicycle. He’s had great friends inspire him to keep going and he hopes he will be an inspiration for others to not give up as he shares his story.
Mr. B’s Coffee and Ice Cream has been carry-out only since the beginning of the pandemic and has no plans to re-open the dining space currently. You can place and pick up orders on Monday, Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. and on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. They are closed on Wednesday and Thursday.