Colleen Weir considered providing support for those on the pandemic front line a good fit for her family’s specialty business.
Weir and her husband, David, operate Creekstone Kettle Works, a gourmet popcorn business, in Montgomery County.
“Looking out at the community and seeing healthcare workers working so many hours and being brave as soldiers are, we thought, ‘What could we do?’” Weir told FarmWeek.
A new health care heroes gift pack joined other options on Creekstone’s new online store that opened last week. Weir said the gift pack has also been sent to other essential workers, including firefighters, during the COVID-19 shelter-in-place situation.
Customers may order a gift with three or four popcorn flavors and a thank you card to be sent in a special box. Weir will even deliver the gift to hospitals in Carlinville, Hillsboro, Litchfield, Springfield and Taylorville, communities where Creekstone Kettle Works popcorn is available. Online shoppers may order gift boxes and have them shipped elsewhere, she said.
“It’s exciting to see the idea catching on,” Weir said of the hero gift packs.
The Weirs operate Creekstone in Raymond. They pop all the popcorn in soybean oil and use pecans from Carlisle’s Voss Farms in caramel pecan and turtle flavors. She continues to look for local sourcing options for all ingredients. While nearly 100 popcorn flavors may be made, about 24 are made regularly with kettle corn, caramel corn, cheddar cheese and caramel cheddar mix among the top sellers.
David Weir also serves in the Army Reserve and volunteers for the local fire department and ambulance service.
The Weirs launched an online store on their website and continue adding products and options as the store grows. Creekstone may be found on Food MarketMaker.com where it also opened an online store. Creekstone posts updates on its Facebook page.
In addition to online sales, Creekstone sells popcorn wholesale and has sold it for events. Currently, the business offers curbside service for online and advance orders at its Raymond shop. Visit the website for contact information.
Weir noted some customers have sent gift boxes with messages to family and friends from whom they’re separated.
“We’re bridging the gap,” Weir said. “We feel like we’re making a difference in people’s lives.”