Carmelfest participants get creative with candy ban

With candy banned, Carmelfest parade participants and goers found creative ways to fulfill their sweet tooth. (WISH Photo/Nick Natario)

CARMEL, Ind. (WISH) – Despite the rain, the weather wasn’t the main talker at this year’s Carmelfest parade. The newly implemented candy ban stole the show.

The rain held off, as more than 100 participants took part in the annual parade Monday. For the first time, participants had to leave the candy behind as they marched.

“I think they need to bring the candy back, definitely,” parade-goer Ashely Storr said. “The kids would love it, and it’s a big part of it. It’s what they look forward to.”

“I’m OK with it,” parade-goer Misty Gutierrez said. “The kids however, were disappointed.”

Organizers eliminated throwing candy a few years ago. Since then, participants have been able to pass it out as they walked.

But with a four lane street as its route, organizers said they felt the timing was right for the ban.

“We just couldn’t take that chance on one child getting hurt over a piece of candy,” Carmelfest public director Cindy Roberts-Greiner said. “So until we come up with a better idea, was the try the no candy this year and see what we do for next year.”

Some chose not to wait until next year. Jessica Bricking invited everyone to her Carmel Glass business Tuesday to get their fill.

“This actually gives us an opportunity to bring people to our shop, so we turned it into a positive versus a negative,” Bricking said.

While other parade-goers simply decided to bring their own treats. “We brought a piñata for our kids and about halfway through we let them hit the piñata,” parade goer Emily Polidian said.

With the threat of severe weather this year, organizers developed a safety strategy. If you’re interested in learning more about it, click here.

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