The Good Hope Lions Club candy store has been cancelled for this year due to health concerns of store committee members as COVID-19 cases continue to rise within Fayette County.
According to Rick Mead, a candy store committee member, the decision to close the candy store for this year was a tough one and was made as late as possible.
Mead explained the committee has been working with the local health department to create plans of operation to keep both patrons and workers safe. An online option for purchasing candy was being worked on but won’t be unveiled this year.
The store and the online option were nixed following a vote by committee members who expressed concern for the community’s and their own health. Most of the would-be workers of the candy store are in an older demographic which is considered a high-risk factor for COVID-19.
“It came down to the safety concerns of the members. With the majority of our workers being in that age-range that the concern was, even with an online pick-up only option, our concern was the individuals working there coming in to town would be exposed to the other members,” said Mead.
He further explained that shifts consist of three-to-five people. If one person were to have COVID that would mean the rest of the shift would need to quarantine for a week or two which would shut down operation anyway.
The decision to close was even more potent once Gov. Mike DeWine gave press conferences updating increased cases and caution needed throughout the state, according to Mead.
According to the store’s Facebook page, “Good Hope Lion’s Candy Store,” due to not selling candy this year, the donation of approximately $35,000 from sales revenue to charities and organizations will not be possible.
“Over the holiday, if you could, give to charity in lieu of your candy purchases. That’s what the main proceeds from our candy store would have went to,” said Mead.
Over the next few weeks, the names of the organizations the Good Hope Lions Club typically donates to will be shared through its Facebook page, and it is being asked donations be made directly to those entities.
“The candy store has been happening nearly 40 years, it’s a holiday tradition in the community,” said Mead. “We will be back in 2021 better than ever with the candy store.”
Those who wish to make some new traditions or try something a little different this year with the candy store being closed can find several homemade candy recipes online. Here are some websites to consider when looking for candy recipes:
Do you have a favorite candy recipe you’d like to share with the community for the holidays? Email it in (and feel free to include a photo) to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reach journalist Jennifer Woods at 740-313-0355.