Skip to main content
Report this ad

See also:

Nostalgic candy rules at the Dime Store in tiny Wakarusa, Ind.

Yards of vintage sweets spark childhood memories.
Yards of vintage sweets spark childhood memories.
Betsa Marsh

Whether your childhood memories go all gooey for Sugar Babies, Astro Pops or bacon gumballs, you’ll find your sweet dreams at the Dime Store in Wakarusa, Ind.

The downtown storefront stocks more than 350 varieties of candy in bins, boxes and barrels. They’re famous for the Jumbo Jelly Bean, created in 1969 by Louie Wolfberg for the Wakarusa Maple Syrup Festival. The super-sized beans sold out quickly, and now the Dime Store carries 15 flavors, including black licorice, cherry, cinnamon, orange and chocolate-covered cherry.

The Wolfberg family sparked the candy sensation in Wakarusa. German immigrant Mose Wolfberg criss-crossed Elkhart County as a traveling salesman, selling his wares from farm to farm. In 1907, he opened Wolfberg's Department Store, and soon after created the variety store which is the Wakarusa Dime Store today. The Dime Store has a sister shop in nearby Granger, Ind.

Even in Mose’s day, jelly beans were king: He usually sold them for $1.49 a pound, but would occasionally mark them down to 95 cents/pound.

Today, the Dime Store carries an entire wall of saltwater taffy: chili mango, maple bacon, smores, blueberry muffin, coconut, buttered popcorn and huckleberry among the little wax-papered bites. Gummies in every shape and flavor gleam from another part of the store.

For nostalgia, there’s a vintage display case of Fannie May Chocolates. Plus Black Cow Bites, Coconut Bar 3-Color, jelly nougats, Turkish Taffy, Astro Pop, Sugar Daddy, bubble gum and candy cigarettes, candy buttons, Charleston Chew Strawberry, Zagnut, Fizzies, Pop Rocks, Squirrel Nut Zippers and wax lips, fangs and mustaches,

But the Dime Store doesn’t miss out on current flavor fads. Just check out the bacon display with bacon air freshener, bacon bandages, bacon floss, bacon frosting, bacon gumballs, bacon soap and bacon toothpaste.

When you go

Dime Store in Wakarusa. Indiana.

Report this ad