National Junk Food Day brings sweet nostalgia

Source - Fay Observer
Published - July 21, 2016
Original Article

National Junk Food Day brings sweet nostalgia

Some call it junk food.

Ann Sims might prefer "nostalgia food."

Sims and her husband, Kyle Sims, own Rocket Fizz Soda Pop and Candy Shop in the Marketfair shopping center.

Inside, you'll find a dizzying array of candy and soda both current and classic - Turkish Taffy, Moon Pies and Black Cows, to name a few - along with novelty signs and gift items.

"It's our own little time machine," Sims said. "People travel back in time to find candies that they had as a kid."

First, a word about junk food on this, National Junk Food Day. They are described as foods that lack nutritional value and are usually high in fats, sugars, salts and calories. They can be anything from milkshakes to potato chips; chocolate chip cookies to candy bars.

Maybe not good for you. But definitely good.

Sims and her husband opened their Rocket Fizz franchise about seven months ago. They formerly owned a coffee shop in Raeford, which they sold in 2011.

An episode of the TV show "Undercover Boss" led to the couple's next venture. The show features company executives going incognito in their stores to view the day-to-day operations, and the episode the Sims saw featured Rocket Fizz president Rob Powells.

"The next day, we contacted them," Sims said.

The Marketfair store has the feel of an old-fashioned candy store, with an edge.

Baby boomers will find some of the candies they remember from their youth, but maybe haven't seen on the shelves in years.

That includes Mallo Cups, Boston Baked Beans, Hot Tamales and Mary Janes. And what '80s kid doesn't remember Pop Rocks?

But it's not all nostalgia. The shop also features sodas and candies that appeal to the younger set.

One of the most popular is BeanBoozled, a jelly bean-like candy with a twist.

The candied beans are packaged in boxes that contain either yummy- or nasty-tasting treats. For instance, you might be buying either "buttered popcorn" or "rotten eggs" flavor. You won't know until you take a bite.

Some people post their reactions to eating the candy online.

"They post it on our Facebook page," Sims said. "I laughed so hard."

Along the same, gross-out lines are sodas in flavors such as "Alien Snot" (actually kiwi and blue raspberry) and "Zombie Brain Juice" (strawberry-orange).

Thirsty yet?

But most of Rocket Fizz's stock is just plain old, sweet candy. And who doesn't like that?

Sims said the favorite part of her job is helping customers find some candy they remember from their past, when they didn't have to worry about calories and such. She loves watching their faces light up when they find what they're looking for.

"It's such a happy place," she said. "You cannot be angry being in a candy store. It's impossible."