LIMA — Growing up, Ducky Allen said it was expected that kids would give special gifts or treats to family members and friends on Easter.
The sentiment may have become less common over the years, but she’s noticing more people returning to her store, Just Ducky’s, in search of specialty treats for the holiday.
“It just warms my heart,” she said.
Sara Anderson, the owner of the local store Sara’s Sweets, expects to sell more than double her regular volume during the holiday week. Only open two days a week, her savory cupcakes are expected to go fast.
“It’s really any holiday,” she said. “I expect we’ll probably sell out pretty quickly this week.”
This year, she incorporated Peeps into her Easter creations, which is one of the candies expected to go first in the Easter candy rush.
“It’s the only time of year I do anything with Peeps,” she said.
She made sure to have some on hand, snapping up Peeps and other supplies the second she saw them on grocery store selves. In the past, Anderson said she’s made the mistake of not buying enough in preparation for the rush, forced to embark in a desperate search at the last minute.
“I don’t mean it pretentious,” she said. “But when people come here, they need a nice piece of chocolate and they’re willing to pay a little bit more.”
According to the National Confectioners Association, the major association representing the majority of the confectionery industry, more than $2.26 billion is spent on Easter candy. Candy also makes up the majority of basket contents at 83 percent, with non-edibles like crayons, stuffed animals and books making up most of the remainder, along with a small portion of healthier options.
Among the most popular treats are jelly beans — specifically, cherry flavored — and the chocolate bunnies — which usually lose their ears to snackers first. Allen makes sure to offer these items in a range of options, from milk, dark and white chocolate. Her store also has chocolate turtles and pretzels.
“People are supposed to be buying for their sibling, their mother, their grandparents,” she said. “I was raised that way… to give something on Easter is supposed to be very special.”