Deer Suckers a treat for hunters
POSTED: November 15, 2007 Save | Print | Email
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ISHPEMING — The new owners of the business that makes Grampa’s Deer Suckers is looking to revive the popularity of the hard candy “treat” that attracts deer.
Grampa’s Inc., formerly located in Negaunee, was bought earlier this year by Kevin Tasson of Skandia and Thomas Kuopus of Ishpeming. It was founded in 1989 by H.G. Artibee.
“The Deer Suckers were widely distributed in 28 states and were extremely popular with deer hunters and backyard wildlife enthusiasts alike,” Kuopus said. “Hunters have found them to work very well, as evidenced by the many pictures and testimonials from successful hunters throughout the country.”
Kuopus said the Deer Sucker is an effective deer attractant and a lightweight alternative to hauling heavy bags of corn, apples or other feed into the woods for hunters.
The product was first developed as a fund-raising tool for Artibee’s daughter’s string orchestra class at Negaunee High School. The class was invited to a worldwide competition in Austria and needed to raise $90,000. Artibee and his wife Alice wanted to do something to help the class achieve their fund-raising goal, and from this the Deer Sucker idea was born.
Artibee initially made 250 suckers. He was met with some skepticism from the orchestra class, but with the help of several local retailers, the suckers sold right away. Proceeds went to the students’ class trip. When requests for the sucker poured in the next year, Artibee returned to the kitchen to make more suckers, and the rest is history.
Grampa’s Inc. is located at 150 Greenwood St. in Ishpeming. Its products are available locally, though the company is working with distributors in several states to expand distribution.
For more information, call 485-4144.