‘A happy place to come to’
It’s one of the only shops in town where children are the main customers.
Every weekday afternoon around 3 p.m., Cindy Kurvink’s candy shop is bustling with students, patiently waiting in a line that stretches down the sidewalk for a chance to come inside and purchase their favourite treats.
Conveniently located within walking distance of three elementary schools and one high school at Redwoods Corner’s Plaza, Candy Bouquets ’n More has become the center for delicious goodies and candies in Walnut Grove.
Kurvink, a stay-at-home mom turned candy connoisseur, has created every child’s dream — a shop with shelves and shelves of candies and treats.
“I get lineups from our till right to our door, and I have to monitor how many kids come in, Kurvink said with a laugh.
“The kids love it, they say ‘I love coming in here, this is the best store ever.’”
Originally interested in creating a shop for candy bouquets, Kurvink decided to pair it with an old-fashioned candy shop as well.
She has brought in some rare retro treats that are hard to find in today’s corner stores.
From cinnamon toothpicks, lemonheads and atomic fire balls to black jack gum, candy shoelaces and old-fashioned taffy, there’s a candy for children ages 4 to 104, Kurvink says.
She also carries a number of chocolates imported from Britain and treats that are sugar-free and gluten-free as well.
“It’s a happy place to come to,” she said. “You never get grumpy customers because people are always so excited to be here.”
Kurvink’s 12-year-old son is perhaps one of the store’s biggest fans.
On weekends passersby can see him dressed as an M&M outside their shop on the corner of 216 Street and 88 Avenue holding a sign welcoming customers in.
But it isn’t just children who have fallen in love. Adults, too, have found much to rave about.
Her unique candy bouquets have become a huge hit, Kurvink says.
“They are the perfect alternative to flowers, especially for people in hospitals or nursing homes where you’re not allowed to have any,” she said.
Each bouquet takes just over two hours to make and they come in a variety of themes including ‘get well’ bouquets with chocolate and jelly Band-Aids, wine bottle bouquets and sports bouquets.
“We looked into a bunch of different franchises to open. I kept looking and ran across candy bouquet international and as soon as I saw it I just knew,” Kurvink explained. “Everything else just didn’t fit for us, and since I saw candy bouquets I fell in love with them.”
This is a new avenue for Kurvink, who had never made arrangements of this type in the past, and the creativity involved in making the bouquets has become a great joy for her.
“It’s funny, sometimes at night when I am just laying in bed I’ll get an idea. It all sort of starts in my head and then it just all comes together,” she said.
“The funnest part of the bouquets is when the customers come in and they help with the ideas. They are picking out the stuff that they want and it’s really cool to see their smiles when they go out of here. It has a piece of them in it that you have helped them make. It’s really rewarding.”
For more on Candy Bouquets ’n More, visit www.candybouquetsnmore.ca.