Editor’s Note: This article is part of BeaverCountian.com’s ongoing series, “The Beaver County Coronavirus Chronicles,” the county’s historical experience of the pandemic. Click here to see more of the series.
Mary Anderson Cardwell was packing up shipping orders Thursday morning at Anderson’s Candies in Baden. Meanwhile, Mike Crudden was busy making cherry cordials at Rosalind Candy Castle in New Brighton.
If you want Easter basket bunnies and other chocolate goodies from local favorites, they are available. You’re just going to have to take an extra step to get them, and these local chocolatiers are hoping you do.
With Easter just more than two weeks out, this would typically be by far Anderson’s and Rosalind’s busiest time of the year. Crudden said Easter sales typically are about 30 percent of his yearly sales. Parents and grandparents would be browsing their chocolate-filled counters and breathing in the heady scent. Instead, they’re calling and asking if they’re open.
Although they’re allowed to still be operating, both businesses have chosen to keep manufacturing products but to close storefronts and offer curbside pickup. They’re also taking online orders and shipping locally and elsewhere.
Curbside customers should call the stores, order what they’d like, and then plan a pickup time.
Anderson Cardwell said her 104-year-old business just off Route 65 has never seen a downturn like this, “not even after 9/11,” she said. Crudden also said it’s been tough. His store has been operating since 1914.
Both stores gave employees the option to keep working.
“The health of everyone is our top priority,” Crudden said. Some have elected to stay home, he said, others are working various hours in different shifts to cut down on interactions. And Crudden himself is doing all the running to the curb to limit anyone else’s exposure.
“I don’t want others to be exposed,” he said.
“The community has been great,” Crudden said. “People are saying they’re choosing different (local) businesses to help during this time … and we’re doing the same.”
And, if there is any silver lining for chocolate lovers, Easter candy will be marked up to 50 percent or more off after the holiday.
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