Would you like to subscribe to our newsletters?

Sign up here for our Newsletter!

Cool retro treats bringing sweet memories for candy lovers in Kamloops

Tumbleweed Toys employee Keri-Ann Racicot holds up some of the retro candy for sale.
Tumbleweed Toys employee Keri-Ann Racicot holds up some of the retro candy for sale.

Astro Pops, Fun Dips, Cracker Jacks and Big League Chewing Gum are just a few of the retro candy items available at Tumbleweed Toys in Kamloops.

There is a hunger for nostalgia-inducing candy in the city, a craving to go back to the sweetest parts of childhood.

“Our top sellers are Butter Rum Lifesavers, rock candy on a stick and Goldmine Gum Nuggets right now,” owner Vanessa Gammel said.

Tumbleweed Toys opened in 2010 to bring quality toys and games, and novelty collectable items to the local market.

Last year, Gammel started adding retro, international and novelty candy to the shelves which prompted by a positive response from customers. She is expanding the store and the candy selection with plans to open the expansion later this month. The store has remained open during the renovations.

“We noticed a gap we could fill so we started slowly bringing in candy and it has just taken off,” she said. “The combination of nostalgic toys and candy pair well together, where people can buy a toy and candy for their kids or grandkids. Older generations love to share the candy they remember from their childhood with their grandkids.”

Retro candy at Tumbleweed Toys in Kamloops.
Retro candy at Tumbleweed Toys in Kamloops.

A few years ago, Kamloops had two Stickys Candy outlets that brought in some specialty treats but both locations have since closed.

Alongside the classic Pop Rocks and Ring Pops at Gammel’s store, there is candy from Japan, Britain, Australia and Mexico.

“A lot of people want imported Japanese and British candy like Pocky sticks and Dragon Ball gum,” Gammel said. “There are licorice pipes and Peppermint Creams just to name a couple of British treats. There's a lot to choose from.”

READ MORE: Explore Three Valley Gap’s ghost town for the 1st time for Halloween

Gammel also carries novelty items and brings in sweet treats that are trending on TikTok, like Nerds rope candy which is a big seller.

It's the first time she has had shelves full of Halloween candy.

“This is new for us this year,” she said. “Marshmellow Peeps are now available in seasonal themes. We have monster, ghost, skull and pumpkin peeps. We brought in Haunted Halloween House decorating kits. We’ll keep bringing in more seasonal stuff.” 

Keri-Ann Racicot has been an employee at the store for over a year.

She said the displays of retro candy often starts conversations with families who are shopping there. 

“A lot of parents are excited to show the candies they grew up with to their kids,” she said.

READ MORE: Okanagan skeleton family kicks off Halloween season with balloon ride

When asked whether the kids prefer the classic confection to the modern offerings, Racicot said the responses are varied, but the kids seem intrigued when they're introduced to them.

In her 20s, Racicot said she loves candy from all eras. 

Retro candy at Tumbleweed Toys in Kamloops.
Retro candy at Tumbleweed Toys in Kamloops.

Gammel said she regularly gets requests for specific candy and does her best to source it. One common request is for soft drinks, something she intends to add once the expansion is complete.

The store is still under construction and Gammel can’t be sure of an exact opening day but she can confirm it will be this month. 

She's already receiving positive feedback from her community.

“They're asking when we are opening the expansion all the time.”

Tumbleweed Toys is located at 1201 A Summit Dr. in Kamloops.

Go here to see everything they have to offer.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Shannon Ainslie or call 250-819-6089 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

We welcome your comments and opinions on our stories but play nice. We won't censor or delete comments unless they contain off-topic statements or links, unnecessary vulgarity, false facts, spam or obviously fake profiles. If you have any concerns about what you see in comments, email the editor in the link above.