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Cero's Candies Celebrates 130th Anniversary

Before there was Hershey’s chocolate, there was Cero’s Candies. The candy shop is celebrating 130 years on Friday of being a sweet tradition in Wichita.

In 1885, “Candy Pete” Cero began making his popular handmade candies in Wichita, and four generations of the Cero family carried on his tradition. Five years ago, new owners took over, sharing their candy-making skills with Cero's traditional recipes.

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Credit http://thegirlchocolatierslife.blogspot.com
Cero's co-owner Darcy Bishop-Thrasher has documented her journey as a chocolatier on her blog.

"Caramel. Without a doubt, caramel --anything that has caramel in it," co-owner Pam Bishop says. "We got about six different things that we do with caramel in it."

Bishop says the Cero family's caramel recipe remains a staple in the candy shop.

"It's unique, and it's flavorful," she says. "It’s not too chewy, and not too hard, and it’s not too runny."

The shop still has some of the old equipment, including the marble table and mixer from the 1930s.

Bishop says she and her daughter still use the timeless technique of cooking the caramel in a copper pot with a wooden paddle on a candy stove.

Cero's Candies is one of the oldest of its kind in the country.

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Follow Carla Eckels on Twitter, @Eckels

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