Kilwins flourishes after opening Local news

For the past few years, both locals and tourists have missed the sweet smells of homemade fondant and waffle cones, as well as the taste of the sweet treats offered by Kilwins.

After enough inquiries, 23-year-old Zachary Mills of Petasca, Michigan, was sent to answer the call.

“The store has been around since 1993, and the public obviously likes it,” said Mills, the store’s new manager. “We had a lot of requests to open it.”

Kilwins offers the same variety of candy, fondant, ice cream, caramel apples and caramel corn as before the store closed in December 2017. Shortly after the store closed in Gettysburg, the corporate headquarters began producing its own Kilwins Heritage Chocolate plant, Mills said.

“Starting to the end, we do it ourselves, from the ingredients to the stages of the process,” he said. “It’s higher quality than before.”

Ice cream has been the most popular product since the recovery. Mills said he topped the Gettysburg Mud charts, Georgia Peach and Praline Pecan.

Mills was hired by the company when he was 15. After he climbed the corporate ladder, he was given the opportunity to reopen a store in Gettysburg.

Kilwins was previously led by Polly Paron and Paige Levan, who retired in September 2015. Daniel Clements and Mackenzie Gene Cluster ran the store for several more years before it closed.

Gattisburg has always been an attractive place for Kilvins, Mills said.

Sue Holmes, a 17-year-old Kilwins employee who was previously the owner, was excited to return to the store. She was glad that during the downtime she found time to see her grandchildren. But at age 71, she couldn’t wait to come back and see loyal customers, especially after isolation during the pandemic, she said.

“There were so many locals asking if we would ever open up,” she said. “I think the product is fantastic.”

From a corporate standpoint, Gettysburg has always been considered an attractive place for Kilvins, Mills said, especially now.

“We are preparing for the big summer, especially due to the fact that the restrictions are lifted just before the tourist summer,” he said.

Starting next week, Kilwins is open from 12:00 to 21:00 on weekdays, from 12:00 to 22:00 on Saturdays and from 12:00 to 18:00 on Sundays.

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