Still Burning Strong

ASHVILLE – Twenty years ago, Denise TeWinkle lit the wick of her business Candle-Escents.

The match was first struck when she visited a candle store of her friend’s mother in Mansfield, Pa.

“I walked in, and the smell of the candles burning, it was like no stress,” TeWinkle said. “Just relaxation and shopping.”

Fascinated with the concept, TeWinkle decided to open up her own candle shop in 1992 on Main Street in Findley Lake. The business grew quickly, and within three years it moved to a bigger building overlooking the lake.

“There was a demand for (candles), but not a big supply back 20 years ago,” she said.

TeWinkle opened a total of five more locations before combining them into the current location on Route 394 in Ashville in 2005.

“It was easier to handle one store,” TeWinkle said.

TeWinkle makes all the candles herself. It took a month of experimentation of blending different waxes with different wicks before she found the perfect combination for her votive candles.

TeWinkle makes 40 different scented votive candles and a large selection of country jar candles. In addition, the store sells Amish and local goods, as well as gift items. The business carries dressings from Brick Village Gourmet in Mayville, maple sugar products from Gustafson’s Maple Products in Falconer and mixes from Spice Harbor in Westfield.

“I think it’s important to support the local economy,” she said.

Customers also can sit next to the fireplace and enjoy a game of checkers while enjoying a cup of hot cider.

TeWinkle would like to thank her customers for their support over the past 20 years.

“We are so grateful to our customers for being a part of our candle family for 20 years,” she said. The store also helps out local brides when they decorate their reception tables with free use of mirrors and glassware when they purchase their floating and votive candles from the store.

Candle-Escents is located at 2227 Route 394 in Ashville. The store is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from noon-4 p.m. For more information, call 763-0431.