Donated Candy Becomes a Sweet Surprise!

We all know that kids, candy, and cavities go hand in hand. As parents, we do our best to keep their little fingers in the fruit crisper and out of the cookie jar. For most of the year, it’s controllable. Well, except for birthday parties (seriously, how many can you attend in a week?), but overall, you are able to stop the kiddos from gobbling down loads of chocolate, gummy bears, and bubble gum. And then comes Halloween.100428293

‘Tis the holiday for obnoxious amounts of candy gathered during Trick-or-Treating adventures. The kitchen table becomes the bargaining table and there is a collective negotiation across the land. Kids everywhere lobby for the ability to consume armfuls of candy while parents are packing it up to save for later. Even with a generous lot of sugar doled out every night after Halloween, somehow, the bounty lasts all the way through Christmas. You can’t throw it out, that’s just wasteful. Not to mention if the kids find out, their attitude is going to match the Frankenstein costume they’re wearing. There must be something better to do with all that extra candy, right? In a word, yes.

The Halloween Candy Buy Back is a wonderful program that enlists dentist to “buy back” Halloween candy, which is donated to Operation Gratitude and other military support groups. Operation Gratitude then fills holiday care packages with the candy to send to our troops overseas. This year, Operation Gratitude is sending 60,000 care packages and they literally need tons of candy to fill them. It’s a great opportunity to teach your son or daughter about the gift of giving while helping a soldier who might not be coming home for the Holidays this year.

Special candy collecting events are planned all over the U.S. in the days following Halloween. To learn more about the Halloween Candy Buy Back, or to find a participating dentist and event in your area, go to You can also learn more about Operation Gratitude at