Candy junkies flock to new store

By Rosemary McCoy

There’s basically one ingredient in the newest store at The Empire Mall.

Sugar.

The Candy Clubhouse opened earlier this month, and the customer response has been overwhelming, owner Rob Jaton said.

“Weekends are packed,” he said. “And traffic is great during the week.”

On a recent afternoon, a crowd of kids and adults walked around the displays trying to decide what to buy.

Making a choice isn’t easy when there are 120 kinds of bulk candy, 80 Jelly Belly flavors, at least 200 varieties of old-fashioned bottled sodas, and an assortment of licorices, candy bars, chocolates in a refrigerated case, theater-box candies, fill-your-own powdered sticks and novelty candies like Sour Smog Balls.

The stranger items are selling, too, Jaton said. Suckers with ants, scorpions and crickets are popular. Customers are buying alligator and ostrich jerky.

And who doesn’t like bacon? The store stocks bacon-flavored gum balls, chips, toothpaste and toothpicks and a half-dozen other items, Jaton said.

The Candy Clubhouse stocks toys, too. There are classic board games like Candy Land, retro toys, dozens of Pez dispensers and Ty Beanie Babies.

Adults enjoy The Candy Clubhouse because “it’s a candy store like they had when they were growing up,” Jaton said. “They’ll say, ‘That’s something I haven’t had for 20 years.’”

Even with the super-sized selection, “every day someone asks for something we don’t have,” he said.

The store, which is near the food court, follows the same hours as the mall.

Candy junkies flock to new store

The Candy Clubhouse opened earlier this month, and the customer response has been overwhelming, owner Rob Jaton said.

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