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We're Open Detroit: Popular Macomb County sweet shop needs help to stay in business

Posted at 5:51 PM, Dec 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-17 15:10:24-05

MT. CLEMENS, Mich. (WXYZ) — In today’s We’re Open Detroit, a retro candy shop in Macomb County is on the brink of closing its doors for good.

The owner says they never recovered from the initial shutdown earlier this year.

“One day I had a dream to open a candy store and six years later, here I am.”

Mike Karpinski moved Pops Sweets An Treats from Richmond to downtown Mt. Clemens two years ago.

Do you know what’s really sweet, besides all this candy? He named the store after his grandfather.

Mike says this was the perfect spot to get people to stop in.

“We are an ice cream and candy store, so we rely on that foot traffic.”

But it’s no bringing people in.

“We used to have a line out the door for ice cream all summer long, we couldn’t even up with the ice cream. Now, I can’t even drag a person in the store for ice cream.”

When the first shutdown took place in March, Mike said he had to throw out $5,000 worth of candy. Plus, he was behind on bills. He had to let all of his employees go.

Then he got the idea to create Easter baskets. Those sales kept him afloat for a bit.

Mike realized his little retro candy shop can’t beat online stores.

“Amazon, eBay, and all these other internet, we can’t compete.”

Mike created a website where he can take online orders and ship it anywhere around the world. He expanded to sell comics, board games, and T-shirts. He also started selling Christmas baskets and pre-stuffed stockings, even one for dogs.

“Just being creative again, try to come up with ideas to try and keep us fresh and people will come and shop with us.”

On Thursday, Mike posted on the store’s Facebook page that he is a few weeks away from permanently shutting down. That post had been shared more than 2,800 times.

He says it will take $15,000 in profits to survive.

“I might have to close the doors because I can’t pay rent and keep up with the bills.”

More orders have been coming in since his Facebook post.

“It’s just amazing, the support. It’s really humbling.”

To support Pops Sweets An Treats, go to https://popssweetsantreat.com/

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