Barrett Township, Monroe County – The Easter Bunny shops at Callie’s Candy Kitchen in Barrett Township, Monroe County. President Gretchen Callie-Reisenwitz said, “We get the orders together and then he comes and picks them up.” Gretchen knows all the bunny’s favorites. She laughed, “Peanut butter, absolutely, and jelly beans of course but peanut butter is number one with the bunny.” He fills baskets for kids and slips in a few extras for himself. “You have to keep that sugar level up! That’s a lot of hopping,” she smiled.
This year, Mr. Bunny missed seeing two old friends. Candy store founders Harry and Carol Callie both died in the last year. Gretchen is now in charge and uses the skills her parents taught her. “[I got] half dad’s business talent, half mom’s decorating,” she said.
Many customers are just learning the news and feel shocked and sad when they stop in for their annual visit. Gretchen’s husband Mark Reisenwitz said, “We always talk about good memories that they’ve had of him and everything.”
Though Mr. and Mrs. Callie are no longer in the store you can see their legacy in every corner. “He’s hear in spirit don’t worry. I know he’s walking behind me and saying, ‘Gretchen get to work,’” laughed Gretchen. Mark added, “We hope everybody when they come in still feel the tradition is continuing.”