Walking into Cravin’ Candy on Stillwater Avenue in Bangor, the first thing I noticed was the bubblegum pink walls, followed by the smell of actual bubble gum wafting through the air.
I immediately felt relaxed and welcome here.
There were a few customers checking out, so I took some time to look around. The gentleman behind the counter was warm and jovial with customers. He greeted me within moments, and introduced himself as Steve Watson, one of the owners of this family-owned business. Steve is excited and full of passion about his family’s new endeavor. He told me about his involvement with the Anah Shrine and his experience as a Shriner clown for the past 10 years. And then he revealed his family’s inspiration to start the business.
Their intention is not to create candy, he said—it’s to create nostalgia. How told me about some of their recent acquisitions—an old-fashioned candy dispenser here, a vintage cash register and a 1953 rocket there—which add to the nostalgic ambiance, and he added that children who visit the store love to play with them. This is what the store is about, he said—bringing out the child in all of us.
You’ll find many of your old favorites on the shelves, things you can’t find all in one place anywhere else. Pop Rocks, Ring Pops, Charleston Chews, Airheads, Pixie Stix, Lemonheads, Bazooka and Fruit Stripe gum, and a wall of Pez dispensers are but a few of the candy standards on hand.
I was transported back to my childhood, and spent quite a while perusing the shelves before selecting gifts for many of my family members (and of course myself). As I was shopping, Steve was putting together a custom order for a holiday gift—a box of nostalgic candy to be shipped out the following day.
A variety of reusable shopping bags with children’s characters on them hung on the wall, low enough so even the smallest child could reach them. The carpets are soft, and he encourages the kids to stay and play. There’s even a chalkboard for them to draw on. Steve envisions generations of families visiting his store, and bonding over candies from generations past and present.
Cravin’ Candy is a place for kids of all ages, even the big ones. Find them at 849 Stillwater Avenue in Bangor. For more information and to make custom orders, call 207-94CANDY or email firstname.lastname@example.org.