A presence downtown nearly 50 years
BALDWIN — After nearly 50 years of working on Michigan Avenue in downtown Baldwin at various jobs, Kris Reese Trucks, owner of Gramma’s Treats, recently sold her fudge and doughnut business and is now enjoying retirement.
Trucks, who is the third-generation of her family to live in the Baldwin area, began working downtown two weeks prior to her 14th birthday.
“I talked Al Kagey, who owned Jones’ Ice Cream, into hiring me two weeks before I turned 14, when I was able to get my work permit,” she said. “A lot of my friends had a job and I wanted a job too.”
Trucks then became hired as a waitress at the Village Coffee Shop, where she worked the floor three years. She then worked at Weaver’s Pharmacy.
“My job at Weaver’s Pharmacy was a lot of fun,” she said. “I worked with Nancy Bradford, Bud and Dee Weavers and Steph Kutchinsky. I remember when we literally moved the store across the street where Pandora’s Box now is, by boxing up sections and walking it across.”
She also worked at the Lake County Abstract Office for just under a year.
“I decided office work wasn’t for me. I liked seeing different people everyday,” she said.
In total, Trucks worked at Weaver’s Pharmacy for 13 years and Patti Drugs for 26 years. She also was employed at Crawford’s Market, where the Jerry’s Grocery building is, for two years. There she made fun memories running the bakery and making bread.
Trucks opened her own establishment, Gramma’s Treats, on March 7, 2013, which she sold on Aug. 31. Tourists and locals enjoyed her wide variety of sweet goodies such as fudge, which also was shipped to customers all over. Locals also stopped in to have coffee, donuts and to chat with Trucks. Baylee Randall bought the business, now named B’z Treats, and is continuing to make fudge and doughnuts.
“Working downtown was the best,” Trucks said. “I got to work at a place I knew everybody. I’d like to thank everyone who always stood behind me and supported me no matter what. I made an awful lot of friends and I never met a stranger. I am proud of my town and all the people in it.”
Truck’s son, Casey Owens, is proud of all his mother’s years as part of Baldwin’s business district.
“I am proud of my mom,” he said. “She was so dedicated to her community and never left Main Street since the ‘60s.”