Here we are the day (or two) after Halloween and whether we like it or not, there are piles of candy sitting inside our home. The first thought would be to consume all the delicious sugar, nougat, and caramel treats with reckless abandon, let the calories be damned! But reason sinks in and you’re left wondering what to REALLY do about your sticky situation…Here are some feel-good ways to get rid of your extra Halloween loot…
Buy Back Programs
You read that right, buyback programs! One of the recent trends among local dentist offices is to buy back Halloween candy at $1 per pound. Give up all your candy for fewer trips to the dentist, plus you can make up to $5, I call this a win-win-win.
Treats for Troops
Don’t get stuck with extra Halloween candy! Help Soldiers’ Angels reach their goal of collecting 17,000 pounds of candy for service members and veterans. Operation Gratitude is another well-known treat for the troop’s organization which helped collect a record-setting 533,891 pounds of candy in 2016! Search for local drop-off sites for both organizations and donate your candy for a good cause! Operation Stars & Stripes, Inc. collects Halloween candy as part of their Operation Trick-Or-Treating for the Troops. The candy is then used as stocking stuffers for their operation Holiday Stockings campaign. These stockings are then sent to troops overseas during the holidays.
Food Bank Donations
Contact your local food banks and see if they are taking donations of unopened candy. You can teach your kids the gift of giving and sharing and providing those with a bit of sweetness when they are in need. Get together with other parents and make one large donation.
Repurpose, Reuse, Recycle
With so many candy options out there on Halloween, there are several ways to repurpose your Halloween sweets. Use it in the kitchen in smoothies, cookies, and cakes. M&Ms make great trail mix companions, just mix with nuts and you’re good to go. Save it for a kids birthday to fill a piñata, candy freezes great, especially chocolate. Melt them in your hot chocolates or coffee on a crisp Fall Day…and the list goes on…
Here are some local places participating in buy-back programs and collecting donations to send to the troops overseas:
HALLOWEEN CANDY BUY-BACK
SMILEWORKS KIDS DENTISTRY
3103 Fruitville Rd, Sarasota
November 3rd | From 3pm to 5pm
HALLOWEEN CANDY BUY BACK
LAKEWOOD RANCH DENTAL
6270 Lake Osprey Dr, Sarasota
November 7th | From 3pm to 6pm
Lakewood Ranch Dental will buy your Halloween candy for $1 per pound (10lb limit). Anyone of any age may participate and it is not necessary to be a patient. Candy will be donated to Soldier’s Angels.
TREATS FOR TROOPS
Visit this site and enter your zip code to find a drop off location nearest you: https://soldiersangels.org/TreatsForTroops.html
HALLOWEEN CANDY GIVE-BACK
Visit the site and take a look at the map for a drop off location nearest you: http://signup.operationgratitude.com/halloween-candy-give-back-map