Nisswa Smiles Hosts Candy Buy Back For Troops
What do you do with your left over Halloween candy? Some in the Brainerd Lakes area bring it to the dentist’s office. All kinds of candy were brought into the candy buy back today at Nisswa Smiles.
“They get a dollar for every pound that is brought in for up to five dollars,” said office manager Angie Sanoski. “We send everything that we collect overseas to the troops through operation gratitude.
It’s an organization that is close to Dr. Luke Waln’s heart, as he was once on the receiving end of the operation.
“I’m a vet myself, and I remember getting packages through things like this and other organizations like this as well, and it’s just nice to get them,” said Dr. Waln.
Now it is his turn to give back and has hosted the candy buy back for the past five years.
Candy of all shapes, sizes and flavors can be donated, but the only restriction comes with powdered candy like Pixy Stix due to shipping restrictions.
“We let them take the good stuff that they want and they bring us back the stuff that they didn’t want,” Dr. Waln said.
The support for the troops is what keeps the kids bringing in candy.
“All of the people defending our country can have something sweet to eat,” said Dana Skaaland, who brought in her Halloween candy for the cause.
But after all, it is a dental office, and there is the added benefit of promoting healthy teeth.
“We don’t want people to have cavities and their teeth to hurt, so the more that they give back is great,” Sanoski said.
It helps for healthy teeth and happy parents.
“We decided that it’s just too much candy for us, and so we decided to bring it up here and give it to Dr. Luke so he can send it over to the troops,” said Sara Smith, a mom of two who brought some candy in for the buy back.
Last year, the group collected a total of 75 pounds thanks to the help from local supporters.
“We’ve gotten a lot, probably just as much candy from stores or people that bought it for trick-or-treaters and then don’t want it in the house because they will eat it, so they bring it in too,” Waln said.
All the candy will be sorted, boxed up and shipped to the troops sometime this month.