MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Another downtown Minneapolis business is biting the dust. The original Minneapolis Candyland location closed its doors for the last time Friday afternoon.

The store at 8th and LaSalle welcomed customers for 37 years. It’s another closure due, in part, to the COVID-19 pandemic.

A visit to Candyland is tradition for so many in Minneapolis.

“Popcorn, candy for myself, for my team for my granddaughter, for my kids,” customer Lori Salo said.

The popcorn and all the sweet treats were able to draw people in for decades, many who worked downtown.

“It’s been kind of an icon to all of our snacks, lunches,” a customer, named Mary, said.

Everyone has a story and a reason why they return.

“We always come here to get our popcorn every week,” customer Marvin Jones said.

Customers say they wanted to show up for the final farewell to the first downtown Minneapolis location.

“It’s been a big part of my life. All my life we come here for every holiday, birthdays, all of my friends have their favorites here and I’m picking them all of their favorites today,” customer Max Sutch said.

Trisha Quaale’s family bought the business in ’81 and opened this store two years later. She says they intended to downsize at some point, closing one of the two downtown locations, but COVID-19 sped up those plans.

“Just the decline in Minneapolis in business. There’s nothing down here to bring people down here. We relied kind of on sports and the theaters to bring people down here,” Quaale said.

She says they are grateful to their loyal customers. Those customers worry about what’s next.

“I don’t know where we’re going or heading in the future so it kind of scares me,” Q. Flakes said.

Regulars say they’ll miss this original stop.

“Just so sad, they’ve been here for so long,” Sutch said.

There is a silver lining. Candyland still has three other stores that will stay open. There’s one still in downtown Minneapolis a block away on 7th, one in St. Paul and another location in Stillwater.

Click here to see a full list of restaurants in the Twin Cities and areas surrounding that have closed since March.

Jennifer Mayerle