Monday, January 18, 2010

Key III Candies

Key III Candies
4211 Earth Drive
Fort Wayne, IN

Photo Credit: Me! Taken in May 2008

My family and candy have deep, deep ties! Not only do we love candy, but some family members have even worked for candy companies.

Wayne Candies Billboard
My mom and my Aunt Carolyn both worked at Wayne Candies. I don't remember that period of time but what I do remember is when my mother went to work at a NEW candy place called Key III.

Key III Candies was a solid bike ride from my house. It was on Earth Drive which was right off of Sand Hill Drive.

Key III existed in this warehouse structure and their main purpose was to make awesome candy!

I asked my mother how she came to work there and she told me that folks from Wayne Candies had left the company to start up Key III. They asked her to come work there and she did. My mom had all sorts of jobs within the candy factory but her most favorite was "quality control". I have to laugh because my mom, who was rail thin, loved her some candy and she could eat lots of it and you'd never know that this is how she passed the time of day ;).

There were two sets of memories that I have of Key III Candies.

First, my mom got to bring home the "rejects". Oh my gosh - when you grow up poor - "rejected" candy is like heaven on earth. She used to bring home boxes of chocolate covered pretzels and chocolate covered peppermint patties - oh - and the chocolate covered carmel nut thingies were THE BEST!!! When the company started experimenting with the white chocolate - well - those were the boxes I tended to leave alone ;).

My second memory was when we had the opportunity to take tours of the facility. I remember the big mixer machines and the conveyor belts where the chocolate was gracefully set up to coat those luscious buttons of carmel nut clusters. Everyone seemed to be wearing white from head to toe.

I haven't been inside Key III Candies in over 30 years (wow!) but my gosh, if I just close my eyes and concentrate real hard, I can still remember those awesome, chocolate smells.