By Debbie Burke
Maybe the first thing you picture when you think of East Stroudsburg’s Country Kettle Candy & Gifts is rows upon rows of barrels filled with colorful and delicious-smelling candy. The barrel candy, which costs a fixed $4.98 per pound, includes everything from sours, caramel creams, fancy hand-dipped chocolates, gummies and licorice in a rainbow of flavors like strawberry, pina colada, grape and apple. You’ll also find retro sweets like Turkish Taffy, candy buttons, flying saucers, Good & Plenty and other favorites from years past.
However, there’s much more to lose yourself in. There are women’s handbags, purses and accessories from the vegan line Simply Noelle; worldwide canvas army bags by Mona B.; and Jim Fleming’s Big Sky Bears™. Find your fluffy and artful socks here along with “nostalgia characters” like Superman, Spiderman and Wonder Woman. Witty and inspirational signs for the home are very in now, with sayings about friendship, how important coffee is to survival, and “Live like someone left the gate open.”
According to Pam Schrenko, who with her husband Lou have been the owners of Country Kettle for the past 31 years, the most common initial reaction from customers when they walk in is, “Wow, look at all that candy!” Pam says with the holidays coming up, she now has the full downstairs area dedicated to holiday decorations, gifts and accessories. What are popular gifts for the holidays? “Jewelry is always popular, especially Swarovski, and they make a dated ornament every year,” she said. “Also, gift baskets, between friends or as corporate gifts, filled with teas, coffees, sauces, jams, jellies and snacks.” Other holiday go-to gifts are special scented candles in holiday bayberry and pumpkin spice, Lizzy James wrap bracelets (that can be worn as necklaces) and Officina Bernardi sterling silver jewelry from Italy.
This shop of candy wonder is open year-round, 365 days a year.
For more information, visit www.country-kettle.com.