Friday, November 21, 2014

Visions of Popcorn Popping in Their Heads

Making popcorn is almost a daily event in the Piantine household. Tony loves popcorn and, for most of his life, has dreamed about having a popcorn business.  Over the years, as the dream remained a dream, it kind of became a joke between friends and family. It was just a fun idea and one of Tony’s many dreams.

Last Christmas, the Piantines thought it would make great Christmas gifts to make and package their own popcorn. They made their own labels and had fun putting together the gifts boxes.  A handful of select friends and family received the Piantine popcorn, slightly satisfying the popcorn dream.

A couple weeks later, the dream began to pop some more. Tony received a phone call from Diane, mother of one of our campers, Drew. She shared that she owned a popcorn business in Green Bay called Heart@Work.  She developed the business as a means to give her son who has Down Syndrome, and other adults with disabilities, purposeful employment.  They would make, package and label several varieties of popcorn, vending to corporate buyers as well as providing popcorn buffets for weddings and banquets.

Much to Tony’s surprise, the owner asked if Camp Daniel would like to partner with business! Wow! Could this be a dream come true?

Tony, Karol, & Trish (our kitchen manager) spent a day making popcorn with Heart@Work, learning all about the business first hand. They excitedly agreed to partner with the business.   The future plan is to produce the popcorn here at camp after our commercial kitchen is built.  We would continue the partnership and the mission of Heart@Work by providing purposeful employment for people with disabilities, as well as providing a means for Camp Daniel to support itself.  This gives us another reason to complete the Camp Daniel grounds and get our kitchen up and running!

Currently, Trish goes weekly to Green Bay, along with other Camp Daniel staff and campers to help with this year’s orders and learn the business. This past Thursday Channel 5 of Green Bay aired a segment on the business! Check out the video clip below!

Looking for the perfect Christmas gift? Give the gift of popcorn!

Uniquely Wisconsin: Heart @ Work - Green Bay Fox Cities News Weather Sports

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