Since October 2005, Paul and Stacy Cannariato have operated Col. Pops Popcorn Company in Wauwatosa, Wis. Located just a few blocks away from the Wauwatosa Public Library and Longfellow Middle School, and next to Daymakers Cafe, Col. Pops’ mission is to offer tasty treats while helping inspire change and community support.
A big part of the business has to do with community fundraising. Earlier in 2005, the Cannariato’s lost their son Vincent to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, or SIDS. Now, 5 percent of fundraising sales go to Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin to help with SIDS research and memorialize their son. A portion of proceeds also go to an overseas orphanage.
“We’ve been inspired by the help and support we received during our tragedy, and knew we wanted to contribute and be on the supportive end for other families dealing with loss,” according to the Col. Pops’ website.
The store pops up more than 40 different varieties of popcorn from buffalo wing and bleu cheese to salsa verde cheddar cheese, and cinnamon bun to peanut butter and chocolate. You can also purchase popcorn kernels to pop at home. There are 12 different kinds on the website.