Waynesville shop owner holding fundraiser for Rolla cancer patient

Charley Dill and his Route 66 Candy Shoppe in downtown Waynesville  made national news earlier this month for his unusual Fat Tuesday promotion.
That promotion brought much attention to the store, including some who shared that candy  has a place in the world, specifically for those who are dealing with cancer.
CNN and a number of national, regional and local media outlets reported on Dill's store offering free fudge on Fat Tuesday, which fell on March 4 this year, to any customers who tipped the scales at 300 pounds or more.
"It was huge" he said with a smile. "Ninety-nine percent of the people thought it is hilarious."
Because of the promotion, Dillon started to receive a handful of emails after the event from people who complained that obesity isn't something to be celebrated, but others have a different message.
"For patients who have lost their taste buds due to cancer, they say that candy is often the only thing that they can taste," Dill said.
He then learned from a friend about a 20-year-old Rolla man who is currently being treated for cancer, and it got him thinking.
"Why not do a fundraiser with our candy to help this young man who has growing medical bills and is without insurance?" he asked.
That's the story of the shop's Golden Ticket fundraiser which was launched last week.
The idea is that people buy a ticket for $100 and it allows them to come into the Candy Shoppe after hours and to indulge in all of the candy they could possibly eat.
That means trying out more than 50 different Taffy flavors and getting to taste some of those of hard-to-find candies from their youth.
The candy feast is scheduled for 1 p.m. this Sunday, March 23.
"The goal is to raise $1000," Dill said. "We have had a handful of people buy tickets, and quite a few people have stopped by or mailed in a donation."
Dill noted that there is still time for folks to stop in and buy tickets or make a contribution to  this cancer cause.
"We are hoping that this event will be equally huge," he shared, "and could be the start of some other fun and creative fundraisers. We could still use all the 'chocoholics ' we can find."
Dillon opened his classic candy store in February of this year.
For more information, visit the Route 66 Candy Shoppe on Facebook or call 573-201-7455.