Traubel’s Popcorn Stand Milestone
Traubel’s Popcorn Stand hit an impressive milestone Wednesday afternoon. At about 3:30 p.m., a purchase from Beatrice resident Andrea Berry put the stand at over $100,000 in sales.
The popcorn stand, an exact replica of a stand of the same name started in 1937, has been reopened for business since 2014.
“I think everybody was really surprised by how quickly it took to reach $100,000,” said Connie Hartig, who works for Community Possibilities, the group in charge of the stand, and was one of the leaders in trying to get the popcorn stand up and running.
Traubel’s had been a staple in Beatrice for 50 years before shutting down in 1987. The original stand was donated to the Gage County Historical Society in the late 80s by the Beatrice High School Class of 1949. Community Possibilities revived the old memories and made the replica now standing at Fifth Street with the help of donations from those who wanted to see it return to Beatrice.
Hartig said that people who remember the stand from back in the day will still come and share memories of how they used to visit the same stand decades ago.
“We have so many of those stories,” she said. “Everybody seems very passionate about it. I think it’s just a memory that has been brought back to life.”
What sets the popcorn stand apart is that there is no hired staff assigned to sell the popcorn each day. Community Possibilities allows anyone to run the popcorn stand, as long as it's for nonprofit purposes, Hartig said.
Seventy percent of the sales go to whoever is running the stand at the time. It could be Mosaic, which helps those with intellectual disabilities, it could be teens raising funds for college, or even a person who wants to raise money to fly to New York.
“Out of the $100,000 of popcorn we have sold, $88,000 has been paid out to those running the stand, so 70 percent may be a little low” Hartig said.
She said it's rewarding to see how popular the stand has become, and that people have even driven from Lincoln to check it out.
In celebration of the $100,000 sale, customer Andrea Berry received a gift bag and 15 tubs of popcorn to use at her discretion.
Traubel’s Popcorn’s hours are 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday, with hours extended until 9 p.m. on Thursdays. The stand is also available for fundraising events for non-profit organizations.