The holidays are a time to enjoy special treats with family and friends, and some of those treats become a cravable tradition each year. Here’s a story of one Utah candy company that has kept that tradition alive for families in Brigham City.
Idle Isle Candy’s history dates back to 1921, when founders Percy and Verabel Knudson, and Vera’s brother and wife, David and LaRita Call, opened a candy and ice cream store on Main Street in Brigham City. David Call’s more than 40 candy recipes and Larita and Verabel’s hand dipping skills became the backbone of Idle Isle’s success. Eventually, the business became a full-service restaurant operating in conjunction with the candy store.
Nearly 75 years later, Knudson’s grandson, Richard VanDyke, and his wife, Shari, purchased the Call’s and Knudson’s shares, sold the restaurant and dedicated the business solely to candy making again. In 2004, under their leadership, Idle Isle Candy renovated a building right across the street from the original café to provide more room for the expansion of their sales and production departments. The retail face of the building has the charming look of a 1920’s candy store.
Today, Shari and her sister Julie Gailey operate Idle Isle, that features those famous hand dipped chocolates, crunchy nut brittle, creamy fudge, English toffee popcorn and many of the unique creations and offerings of the original Idle Isle. Shari Knudson says the company continues to grow as many of their customers have passed along the tradition of their candy from generation to generation in their families.
As Bank of Utah’s Senior VP and Commercial Loan Officer in Brigham City, Norman Fukui, says “We have had the privilege of facilitating their business loans for 10 years, and understand the seasonality of their business. We’re happy to provide a line of credit throughout the year, so they have working capital to make their candies leading up to the holidays. They still hand dip their candy in the old-fashioned ways, and you can taste that extra care in what they make.”
Shari Knudson says, “Bank of Utah continues to be a great financial partner for our business as we develop new products and continue to grow. We really appreciate them and all our customers who have passed down our candy as a tradition from generation to generation in their families.
Brigham City Branch Manager Melissa Bernson adds, “Idle Isle Candy is truly a tradition in our Brigham City and we’re very proud and grateful to have the privilege of helping them succeed. The community would not be as sweet without them.”