Sooth Your Sweet Tooth at Pops’ Sweet an Treats
LBN Community Series
Carpinski is the owner of Pops’ Sweets an Treats in downtown Mt. Clemens. The store, much like its owner, is full of surprises.
Pops’ Sweets an Treats is a child’s candy dream come true. The store is full of all the confections from childhood and features ice cream, Slush Puppies (the real ones, not the knock offs) and grab-and-go food such as walking tacos and kielbasa.
“With my stuff, you can walk around downtown, or you can sit here, have lunch, grab some candy. We’re a one little stop shop for everything,” Carpinski said.
“I love my old candies,” said Carpinski. “I like the idea of the things I created myself just from experience and feedback.”
Carpinski has a lot of experience and many memories from which to draw inspiration. His memories stem from making the rounds with Pops, his grandfather, who was a father figure to him.
“They were my rock. They were the ones who showed there was actually someone out there who loved me. This is my way of giving back,” said Carpinski.
Pops was a popcorn machine repairman who supplied places such as the Fox Theater, the Silverdome and Olympia Entertainment. Carpinski would ride along on Pops’ rounds.
“Those were the best times,” he recalled. “I would go during the summers with him to work. We did the first Wrestlemania. As I got older, I appreciated all those times.”
As he got older and Pops passed away, Carpinski owned and operated a landscaping business, which he started in his 20s with a push mower and a weed whip in the back of his car. More than 17 years later, he had a dream about opening a candy store in honor of Pops.
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Pops’ Sweets opened in downtown Mt. Clemens in April 2019. This time, instead of penny candy, Carpinski decided to go with retro sweets instead.
The result is a sugary trip back in time combined with the next “it” experience to offer customers. Unicorn tacos, made-fresh waffle cones and flash-freeze ice cream are all top sellers.
Pops’ Sweets is a family affair. Carpinski’s son, Michael, 15, also works in the store.
“Hopefully, this will be an experience for him like I had with my father [Pops],” said Carpinski.
More than candy to Carpinski, Pops’ Sweets is a chance at redemption.
“I just figure giving back and doing the right thing is important,” he said.