Family feud leads to dueling candy stores

May 20, 2009 4:47:45 AM PDT
Candy makers Greg and Socrates Goumas are opening a new store and are armed with their grandfather's secret recipes, but so is their older brother - and he's moving in 100 feet away.

When George Goumas returned to Ohio from Sanibel Island, Fla., to run his family's candy business, he had his mother's blessing - filling the prodigal son role - but he squeezed out his brothers, long the chief chocolatiers at Goumas Candyland.

The feud came to a head in December, when detectives were called to one of the family's stores and Greg and Socrates were ordered off the premises.

This was no problem that could be solved by covering it in chocolate and a miracle or two.

So the two younger brothers opened their own store and now plan a second in Granville, just down the street from their brother's third planned location.

But shoppers will likely be the ones to determine which Candyman can - and which ends up stuck in a chocolate swamp.

"I think it's too early to tell if people will pick one over the other," said Dena McKinley, whose printing business is located between where the two stores will set up shop in Granville. "I call it the Battle of the Bonbons."

George, 58, said their father had always wanted a location in Granville, about 30 miles northeast of Columbus.

Socrates, 56, said he believes George's decision is a copycat move.

"My mom was thinking all of us would work together again and be a happy family," Socrates Goumas said. "That wasn't going to happen."

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