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Hannon opens dream candy store at port

Sweet dreams become a reality for port entrepreneur Becky Hannon. The Pilot/Arwyn Rice
A new business is busy preparing to fill a sweet spot at the Port of Brookings Harbor.

Whales Tail Candy & Gifts will soon offer sweets and beach-theme gifts in a sumptuous sherbet-colored store.

“Candy is just one of the most wonderful things in life,” Whales Tail co-owner Becky Hannon said.

Becky and husband Don Hannon, who have lived in Harbor for two and a half years, plan to open the doors  Saturday, March 27.

The store is located in the at the Port of Brookings Harbor shopping center on Lower Harbor Road, and will offer a wide selection of classic candies, beach toys and beach-themed jewelry.

Becky has always dreamed of opening a candy store, and on Feb. 1, Don surprised her with an offer.

“He came to me and said ‘How would you like to make your dream come true,’” Becky said.

Once the Hannons decided to go forward with the store concept, things moved quickly.

Within the week, Don was traveling Oregon looking for candy suppliers and display cases to showcase the tempting rainbow of sweets.

On Feb. 5, Becky left her job at a local utility company and, on Feb. 16, the port commission approved the lease on their storefront, two doors down from the Hungry Clam.

“It’s a great location,” Becky said, noting the seafood restaurant’s popularity, and the friendliness of the other business owners in the shopping area.

The Hannons also want to keep their treats local, selecting Oregon products when possible and using Brookings and Harbor businesses, such as hiring InMotion Graphics  to create their new business signs.

“This community is what will help keep us alive,” Don said.

With the summer tourism season coming up, the Hannons have big plans to welcome visitors with a grand opening celebration over Memorial Weekend, but for now they want to concentrate on serving local sweet tooths.

Already the store has cases of saltwater taffy in more than 30 flavors, unicorn lollypops and brightly colored hard candies. More candy comes in almost every day.

The taffy Whales Tail carries is egg-white based, a slightly different flavor and texture when compared to oil-based taffy, Becky said.

The taffy has a richer flavor and isn’t as soft as the oil-based taffies. Customers will be welcome to sample the taffies, within reason, she said.

Whales Tail also has two large dehumidifiers to keep the candy from becoming sticky and gooey in the coastal humidity.

At the back of the store a climate-controlled chocolate case will display quality chocolates, including cremes, butters and  truffles.

“Chocolate is a celebration,” Becky said.

The case insures the chocolate is kept at ideal temperatures, between 64 and 67 degrees, Don said.

If it gets colder or warmer the chocolate can turn white, and the creme and butter fillings can degrade, he said.

In addition to the classic candies, Whales Tail will offer a wide selection of sugar-free candies.

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