Remember the days when little bits of heaven came in small packages with names like Mary Janes, Bit-O-Honey and Tootsie Roll Pops? Remember how running down to the corner store to buy ice cream and penny candy was the best part of the day?
Fortunately for the residents of Thurmont, Gateway Market and Candyland is the corner store that still sells these little bits of heaven. Celebrating its 25th anniversary, Gateway Market is a general store, liquor store and candy haven all in one. Tucked alongside Rt. 15 in Thurmont, visitors are first greeted by the red-and-white striped awnings along the storefront. Once inside, visitors are greeted by at least one member of the Bollinger/Doll family who have been running the market since its beginning.
In 1983, Sterling and Linda Bollinger built the market as a means to sell the produce that was grown on their orchard on Kelbaugh Road. Inspired by the family’s annual vacation to West Virginia, where they would stop at Hilltop Fruit Market and buy bagged candy, Sterling decided to sell candy as well. Gateway Market quickly transformed into Gateway Market and Candyland.
The market continues to sell produce in addition to many other items. Jams and jellies line the shelves and custom gift baskets are available. The market sells dried fruits, nuts and mixes for soups and bread.
Gateway Market and Candyland exemplifies a family run business. The Bollingers worked as a family on the orchard and that tradition carried over to the market. Each of the Bollinger’s nine children and now 13 grandchildren has, at some point, all worked at the m