BERLIN – The famed fudge, saltwater taffy and caramel popcorn of Dolle’s Candyland will soon be available in downtown Berlin.
One year after expanding with a West Ocean City location, Dolle’s Candyland will expand again with a shop on Main Street in Berlin. Co-owner Anna Dolle Bushnell hopes the shop, which will be just south of A Little Bit Sheepish, will be open by mid-April.
“We want to make it seem like Dolle’s has always been in Berlin,” Bushnell said. “We want the look and feel of an old-fashioned candy store.”
The Berlin shop will be the fifth Dolle’s location in Worcester County. Since Bushnell and her brother took over Dolle’s operations in 2000, they’ve worked to expand the family business. While most products are made at the flagship store on Wicomico Street and the Boardwalk, Dolle’s also has locations 67th Street, 120th Street and in West Ocean City.
Ivy Wells, Berlin’s economic and community development director, said she was thrilled that the newest Dolle’s location would be in Berlin.
“I worked with Anna and Dolle’s a few years ago about a Berlin location and I’m so happy that it finally worked out for them,” Wells said. “Berlin is truly becoming a culinary destination and the sweetest place on the Eastern Shore.”
Bushnell said she’d been encouraged by various people to bring a shop to Berlin and an opportunity came up within the last month. After viewing the small space in the former PNC Bank building, Bushnell told the property owner she’d let him know her decision within 24 hours.
“I think I called him back within 15 minutes,” she said. “It just felt right.”
Bushnell is looking forward to using some remnants of Dolle’s early days to decorate the shop in Berlin.
“We have a lot of antiques from Dolle’s we will be able to show in that kind of space,” she said.
While the new store will be different from existing Dolle’s locations, shoppers will still be able to buy the products they’ve come to love.
“They can look to us for all of our classics,” she said. “We’ll focus on chocolate but they’ll be able to get taffy and popcorn.”
A few other storefronts are expecting new tenants in the new year as well. The Dusty Lamb will be moving into the former location of Yuppy Puppy on Main Street. Wells said several businesses were interested in the William Street location currently occupied by Dusty Lamb.
She pointed out that many shops have found success by starting in small spaces in Berlin and moving into larger more prominent locations after a few years. Heart of Gold Kids, World of Toys and Uncle Jon’s Soap are just a few examples.
“Over the last five years so many of the businesses that started in small locations have done so well they’ve expanded,” Wells said. “It just shows the success of our downtown business community.”