Tag Archives: Powell’s Sweet Shoppe


Were you a winner in our Caltopia raffle?

Baskets filled to the brim with gift certificates and pizza for a year from LaVal's
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The two days of Caltopia were quite a whirl for students, faculty and staff, as well as for exhibitors like Berkeleyside. From the tens of thousands who passed through the self-proclaimed “greatest days on planet Earth”, we were able to have conversations about local news with hundreds of people, we launched OneNews/Berkeleyside, our exciting new citizen journalism app, and we even found some potential new journalists.

But what about the Berkeleyside raffle? We partnered with a host of wonderful Berkeley businesses … Continue reading »

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Thousands of Cal students, staff flock to Caltopia

Students new and old come out in droves for the community-boosting swag-fest that is Caltopia
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UC Berkeley freshmen, some looking dazed, others excited, as well as more blasé seniors, turned out in their thousands on Sunday for Day One of Caltopia, the self-described “two greatest days on the planet”.

The event, held at the UC Berkeley Recreational Sports Facility at 2301 Bancroft Way, sees more than 100 exhibitors showcasing their wares and services to the Cal community, including the university’s staff and faculty.

It’s a combination of freebie-fest — with giveaways galore, be it bites of Clif Bars, T-shirts, pens and mouse pads and the chance to win covetable prizes like Kindles from big brand names like Pepsi  — and social mixer.

Berkeleyside made its debut at Calopia yesterday and we will be there again today. Find us at booth E104.

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UC Berkeley’s Caltopia: The ultimate Town & Gown affair

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This weekend, when around 30,000 students and faculty stroll through Caltopia, browsing the booths of more than 100 exhibitors, Berkeley’s two driving forces, the city and its university, will be pitched in perfect harmony. And Berkeleyside will be there to sing along too.

Caltopia was launched nine years ago as a way for Berkeley businesses to welcome Cal students, both current and new, back to school. The event runs on Sunday and Monday this year, and classes start up … Continue reading »

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Candy lovers will delight in Powell’s Sweet Shoppe

Print Cates, Shahrazad Junblat, and Nabil and Zeina Hissen
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The yet-to-be opened Powell’s Sweet Shoppe on College Avenue was abuzz with activity Thursday as its owners and new employees put away stacks and stacks of candy.

The store, which will open on Wednesday Nov. 17, stocks 6,000 to 7,000 different items at any one time, so getting it in order for its grand opening involves a lot of work.

But for the three owners – a husband and wife pair and her sister – all that work just brought on more smiles.

“This isn’t a job for me,” said Nabil Hissen, an engineer who also owns a Powell’s in Lafayette. “It’s fun. I work and then I come here for fun.”

Nabil, his wife Zeina, and her sister Shahrazad Junblat looked for a location for their candy store for a year and a half before finding a spot at 3206 College near Alcatraz. The building used to house Ovation, a women’s clothing store.

“It took us a long time to find the right location,” said Zeina Hissen. “We wanted to find the right neighborhood.”

“I am a Berkeley resident and I absolutely adore this neighborhood,” said Junblatt. “Kids can ride their bikes here, we are surrounded by schools, a residential area and families. It’s very accessible.”

With such a huge array of candy, the store is sure to be popular. Walking inside is like taking a trip in time. The walls are decorated with historic images, including a tin Coca Cola sign from 1939, a copy of the playing board of every edition of the Candyland game, a 1905 Fifth Avenue box, and nostalgic posters.

The center of the store features a Willie Wonka movie playing in continuous loop. It’s the original version starring Gene Wilder, not the remake with Johnny Depp.

And the candy! There is an entire section featuring Willie Wonka candies, a section called Memory Lane with old-fashioned candy, a novelty section featuring some wild treats, like cheddar cheese flavored larvae (real) and an authentic IV bag filled with candied “blood.” (Very popular this Halloween)

There is a British section and a section with different colored M&Ms. There is a card catalog filled with different types of gum. (With a sign above it reading “When I was your age, this was a search engine.) There is a section devoted to mints (peppermints and other wild flavors, including curry and ranch dressing) lots of lollipops, a section with chocolate bars from around the globe, and a gelato bar.

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