There is new life in the old Wein’s Building along Main Street in Clarion — two lives in fact.
Joe and Amy Scarnati, owners of Dan Smith’s candies purchased the store after Alan Wein closed the business and they refurbished half of the building as their new store.
Sugar Creek Boutique occupies the other half of the building.
“The shelves were actually in the basement. We refinished them and moved them to the main floor. It gives it more of a candy shop look.”
Amy Scarnati added, “It was a lot of work but it was well worth it.”
Jos Scarnati explained, “We wanted to expand our floor space because we wanted to have ice cream. We have been worked with Brandy Camp Creamery in Elk County.
“There are eight flavors of ice cream. They are blending our chocolates and a mint ice cream that has our hostess mints blended into our ice cream. It has been a really good collaboration and we have had good feedback. We will be doing milk shakes as well.”
Joe Scarnati said summer is traditional a slow time for candy stores but the ice cream provides an added feature during those months.
“This is a fun store,” said Joe Scarnati, pointing out most of their stores have a Victorian theme but this space will be different.
“This store is light and airy,” he said.
Lisa Heller has been the manager of Dan Smith’s for more than 20 years.
“About nine out of every 10 customers who come into the store remember when it as Wein’s,” she said.
“We have 30 vendors there now,” said Heller. “There is a wide range of items.”
“We are looking forward to the holidays and Autumn Leaf Festival,” said Joe Scarnati.
“This is by far our busiest store,” said Amy Scarnati.
There company also has stores in Brookville, DuBois, Ridgway and Indiana. The Clarion store will now offer extended hours on weekdays.
The store has expanded its workforce and employs four people and the manager.
Joe and Amy Scarnati purchased the business in 2015 shortly before Joe retired as a Pennsylvania senator.
“Our Brookville manufacturing plant is running at full capacity now,” said Joe Scarnati. “We are always looking to expand.”
He did not rule out Franklin as a possible location.
“Show us a location and a manager and we will see,” he said.
The Dan Smith Candy Company began as an ice cream company in 1946 on the porch of Dan Smith’s home in Brookville.
Encouraged by the success of his ice cream business he decided to expand into making candy. His first store in Brookville was opposite the Sylvania factory that employed over 700 people.