BELMONT, N.C. — In downtown Belmont near Stowe Park, there's a slightly unexpected factory for, of all things, cotton candy.
The people who spin up the seven cotton candy flavors are all residents of Holy Angels, a place that teaches life skills to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The employees do many different tasks, like working at the register and busing the tables.
The Cotton Candy Factory opened in 2017 in a historic building from the 1880s that was originally a hotel. Since opening its doors, it has been a big attraction in Gaston County ever since then. All the proceeds from the store go to Holy Angels.
The store features lots of regular candy and nostalgic sweets, too. People who visit can build their own bag chock full of delicious treats. But the main event -- the cotton candy -- is spun so largely it's nearly the size of your head.
It's impossible to miss one of the biggest gumball machines you've probably ever seen right in the front window of the store. Many people will stop and take selfies next to it or throw a coin in it to get a gumball.
The Cotton Candy Factory is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Contact Larry Sprinkle at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.