NORTH TONAWANDA, N.Y. (WKBW) — It's the season for chocolate bunnies and more chocolate bunnies. It’s busy season for Platters Chocolates on Niagara Falls Boulevard in North Tonawanda. But this Easter isn’t the same.
John DiGuiseppe, the Vice President of Business Development at Platters Chocolates, said the inside of the store is usually packed this time of year.
“It’s like Macy’s at Christmas. You can’t move,” DiGuiseppe described. The difference this year, he said, is night and day.
“To see it empty like this... It's a reflection of what we're going through as a nation right now,” DiGuiseppe said.
You can still come into the store to shop because Platters is retail and considered an essential business. Candace Licht came to shop with her husband and two sons.
“This is our tradition. Platters is a tradition. We don't get chocolate anywhere else. Just here,” said Licht.
Licht a mom of five. She said her parents, in-laws and kids all celebrate Easter together at her house. Just like Platters, it’s tradition. But this year, they’ll celebrate separately. She says that’s why she’s buying chocolate – to keep some sense of tradition alive. She bought a chocolate fire truck for her son who is an EMT in Buffalo and a bunny riding chocolate tractor to send her son in Ohio.
“This is for my son who's an EMT in buffalo. I'm having a hard time not being able to see him. This is for my son who lives in Ohio, who we can't see either because we can't travel,” said Licht.
Platters Chocolates started curbside pick-up. DiGuiseppe said that’s how they're doing about 90% of their business. You can order curb side pick-up online or over the phone. It takes 24 hours to process the order. Once you’re notified it’s ready, you head to Plattters and let them know your car through text. They then bring your sweets out.
“The printer is constantly going. We're very busy. We're very pleased in a situation like this,” DiGuiseppe said.
They also ship the chocolate. DiGuiseppe said they’re shipping out more local orders than ever.
“It's nice knowing that we're a part [traditions]. We've been getting feedback from Facebook and all the others - Just thank you. Thank you for helping us have some normalcy in this time,” said DiGuiseppe.