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A career in chocolate makes life happier
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More photos from this shoot
Photo: Gary Krambeck/gkrambeck@qconline.com
Jenny Crowley candy maker at Lagomarcino's in Davenport.
More photos from this shoot
Photo: Gary Krambeck/gkrambeck@qconline.com
Jenny Crowley candy maker at Lagomarcino's in Davenport.
Jennifer Crowley remembers childhood fun times while she's working.

"Who would not want to work in chocolate," she said. "This is like when you were little making mud pies, but you are being creative and getting paid."

Mrs. Crowley is a chocolatier at Lagomarcino's. A family tradition in the Quad-Cities since 1908, the confectionery opened its original store in downtown Moline where it still remains a popular eatery and ice cream and candy shop.

The candy-making family established a presence in Iowa in 1997 when it opened in the Village of East Davenport.

Known for its homemade candies, decadent chocolate, hot fudge sundaes and soda fountain, the business offers a pleasant throwback to simpler times.

And Mrs. Crowley enjoys being a part of the family business. "We are not just employees here; when you are hired they tell you immediately 'welcome to the family.' That is what makes a real difference than any other job I have had," she said.

Mrs. Crowley has worked in retail and a variety of other jobs, including a stint as a lunchroom lady at an elementary school and in the housekeeping industry.

She left Lagomarcino's for a while but came back to her "dream" job of making candy at the Davenport shop.

"I love to be creative and work with a product that makes people happy," said Mrs. Crowley, who has been making candy for more than 10 years.

"Makes my days interesting to make chocolate and use molds for weddings, corporate special orders, Christmas, Valentine's Day, Easter and all year long," she said. "This can be tedious, but fun and no day is the same here."

She said the quality chocolate the Lagomarcino family uses makes a difference in bringing smiles to a lot of people.

"This quaint little store draws hundreds of families in for the great chocolate sundaes and homemade and handmade chocolate," Mrs. Crowley said.

The mother of three grown boys, Ms. Crowley said her work at Lagomarcino's has helped her put her kids through college. "I never imagined this is where I would end up, but at 54, it is the greatest place to work.

"I remember when my sister brought me to Lagomarcino's for the first time as a kid and "oooing" at the chocolate in the glass cabinets," she said. "All the candy counters were so beautiful, full of candy. And now I work here."





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  Today is Tuesday, Sept, 30, the 273rd day of 2014. There are 92 days left in the year.

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