WILSON, NC (WNCT) — Karyl and Tony Noonan decided that it was time to share one of their family favorites with the Wilson community by opening the Whirligig Popcorn Shoppe.
“We had cooked stovetop popcorn for a long time. It’s one of my family favorites. It’s one of those things you can do for game night, movie night,” said Karyl Noonan. “It was just one of those things that we had a passion for.”
Served warm, Chicago-style popcorn is made up of cheddar-coated kernels mixed with caramel-covered kernels. It’s a staple in the Noonan household, where Noonan made the treat on her stovetop. Now the Noonan’s will be selling popcorn made with their own recipe.
“It’s our own recipe … and we’ll have the traditional flavors like cheddar cheese and the caramel … It makes your hands all kind of gooey when you eat it. It’s just that kind of good,” said Noonan.
There will also be a spicy cheddar flavor and a movie theater flavor along with seasonal options.
The Noonan family is originally from Chicago, but Karyl and Tony Noonan decided to open their business in Wilson because of the connections they’ve made to the town.
“It’s perfect timing, honestly. We’ve been in Wilson for over 21 years now … We saw all our kids grow up here. We’ve really just set roots down here,” said Noonan.
They are excited about the efforts to revitalize the downtown area, too.
“We love seeing the downtown area revamping. There’s so many passionate people involved in these projects,” said Noonan.
The Noonans are hoping to get the community involved with creating new flavors as well.
“We were hoping to do a survey test in the community and have people give their input or ideas of what they’d like to see and then come up with a Wilson mix,” said Karyl. “You can do almost anything with popcorn. You can make lots of different flavors and it’s just a very creative process, which is fun.”
Noonan hopes that the historical character of the building where the business is located will carry on through their business.
“It was a carriage shop in 1901, or something around that era … It’s got this sort of general store-looking feel to it, so that’s the environment we’re going for,” said Noonan. “We’re hoping to give people a nice, fun environment to shop in.”
There is no set date for the Whirligig Popcorn Shoppe opening, but the Noonans are hoping that they’ll be up and running soon. It will be at 222 Tarboro St. W. in Wilson. Check out their website, where you can order popcorn to be shipped to you now.