When Ted and Megan Green moved to Leadville last year, they knew they wanted to start a small business and ease into mountain life after several fast-paced years in Chicago. What exactly their business would sell was less certain at the time.
That’s when the Greens’ daughter Grace asked to visit a candy shop in town, a regular activity for the family of five in Chicago. “We realized there wasn’t a candy shop and thought, ‘Well, it would actually be pretty cool if there was,’” said Ted Green, “and Leadville seemed like a good town for one.”
Less than a year later, the Greens opened Blueflower Candies & Provisions on East Seventh Street in Leadville, offering a variety of nostalgic candies, healthy snacks, games and beverages. The shop, which has been open for less than a month, also sells art and apparel by local makers, and will operate a fleet of rentable e-bikes this summer.
Blueflower Candies & Provisions is a name derived from Ted and Megan Green’s origins in the American Midwest and was agreed upon long before the pair actually started their business. Ted Green is originally from Kentucky, the bluegrass state, and Megan Green is from Kansas, the sunflower state. When merging the states’ nicknames, Megan Green derived “Blueflower,” and the name stuck.
Now, a sign reading “Blueflower” hangs from a brightly-colored building on East Seventh Street across the road from Zero Day Coffee and next door to Full Circle of Lake County, adding another lively business to a street that was mostly residential a year ago. The candy shop’s interior is bright and equally colorful with candy machines and several rooms, each offering a different type of product.
A table of brightly-wrapped candies greets visitors near the entrance of Blueflower Candies & Provisions. To the left, there’s a counter with fudge and premium candies. Toward the back of the shop, several rows of candy bins hang on the wall for patrons to build their own bag of sweets. There’s a room with beverages and healthy, sustaining snacks for the backcountry, and another with apparel and old-school board games.
Ted Green, who quit his job to open Blueflower Candies & Provisions, said that business has been great since opening. In a few short weeks, students at Lake County High School have bought out the store’s supply of a licorice candy that went viral on social media. Meanwhile, business owners on Harrison Avenue are loading up on snacks at lunchtime instead of waiting in line at restaurants.
In addition to buying out products, Ted Green added that visitors are hanging out at the shop longer than he expected. “I think it’s awesome,” he said. “It’s been great to get to know people.” This summer, Ted Green hopes to build an outdoor seating area where patrons can relax while eating their quick lunch or enjoying an after-school sugar fix.
Megan Green, who also works as an English teacher at Lake County Elementary School, said she is working with local businesses to stock the candy store with their products, including Silver Llama Market & Eatery, which supplies the fudge, and Hammond’s, a company that has made candy in Denver for over a century.
In the near future, Blueflower Candies & Provisions will also open its bike barn, which houses a fleet of 25 e-bikes. Ted Green hopes the e-bikes will make recreation more accessible for visitors and residents of Lake County and are intended for use on the Mineral Belt Trail and other popular areas.
In the long term, Ted and Megan Green hope to keep their business “small, family-owned and fun” while serving their new community. “This is something we’ve wanted for a long time,” said Ted Green. “We’re going to kick back and enjoy it for a while.”