Recently I opened a file from 2007 called “Candy Sale Price List,” and it brought back a wave of memories. Sometime during that year, another local ministry was contacted about a candy donation in Scottsdale. It either did not suit them to get the candy, or else they knew the quantity was so large that they called in some back-up. I don’t recall specifically. A candy convention had taken place at a Scottsdale resort, where several not-yet-on-the-market items were previewed, along with all manner of candy in general. They had leftovers and wanted to donate them to charity.
We drove our large school bus and 15-passenger van over to that ritzy resort in Scottsdale and filled both vehicles FULL (to the roof) of sweet items — hard candies, chocolates, gum, toy-candy combinations, and mints, both generic brands and gourmet ones.
This brand of chocolates was part of the candy stash. Highly recommended for chocolate lovers!
We had so much candy that we donated the van contents to another youth ministry in the community. When we arrived at Aim Right and needed to unload the bus, suddenly little neighborhood helpers materialized out of nowhere. They helped us lug boxes and boxes up the stairs into our storage room (the room off the balcony that faces the large parking lot). If I recall correctly, the bounty did not all fit in there, though. It overflowed to other spaces.
We sold a lot of Liberty Orchards products — boxes upon boxes.
We let the helpers choose candy to take home with them. I remember that they filled boxes as full as they could and then struggled to carry them home. CANDY! CANDY FOR DAYS!
We had a LOT of these — very similar to the Jelly Belly brand.
Somewhere along the line, after storing all of this candy and beginning to sort through it, we realized we couldn’t feasibly use it all for programs before it began to harden, melt, or not be very palatable (or send kids into a serious sugar overdose). Plus, some varieties just weren’t that kid friendly. Enter the idea of “Candy Sales.” We sold big bags of candy for a great bargain after school on the sidewalk. We set up a table at a church’s indoor yard sale and sold $420 worth of candy there. I think eventually we even had a few folks calling and asking, “Do you have any more of so and so?” as word about our cheap candy prices spread.
The candy stash is long gone now, but “The Year of the Candy” is a reminder of God’s faithfulness in the form of an unexpected blessing. It was one of those “good things” from the Father that we didn’t even know to ask for, yet received (Matthew 7:11). He is a good, good Father.