A Northport staple since 1978, Harbor Trading sells classic and contemporary confections to anyone with a sweet tooth. “Everyone thinks this is a kids’ store, but I get a lot of adults,” says owner Jane Fontaine.
Harbor Trading was established as a small dry goods store that served penny candy “the old fashioned way” in a small brown paper bag. Eleven years ago, Fontaine bought the shop, moved it across the street and elaborated on its content, adding more candy, ice cream and a party room.
“I was in the restaurant business, and it was something different,” Fontaine says. “I liked the challenge. I also liked the fact that it was an icon in the town and I could make it more fun.”
Under her ownership, the shop has doubled in size and now stocks over 700 different types of candy, including old-time favorites Mary Jane’s, Bonomo’s Turkish Taffy and Black Jack gum. “People love coming in and seeing candy that they had when they were kids,” Fontaine says. Parents often bring in their children and regale her with tales of when they visited Harbor Trading in their younger years.
Adults and little ones alike can also stock up on contemporary treats such as M&Ms (in an assortment of colors) and gummy worms. While shopping, customers love catching a glimpse of themselves in the store’s three fun-house mirrors — one of them is an original from Coney Island.
One tradition that has remained over the years? Candy is still served in that trademark small brown paper bag.