A rather large piece of a River Valley business’ history appears to have been stolen.
Jodi Greer with Kopper Kettle Candies says they noticed the large copper cheese kettle displayed in front of their Van Buren location was missing Tuesday morning (July 22).
Greer is not sure exactly when this piece of the family’s history was taken or how.
The kettle, which is between 300-400 pounds and four feet in diameter, has been perched on stones in front of the business for decades, according to Greer.
Her husband’s grandmother got the kettle in 1958, and Greer says it was an antique even then.
“It’s at least 100 years old,” she said. “It’s just priceless to us.”
"Our loyal guests and loyal customers that have been coming in for years have contacted us saying hey, what can we do?” said co-owner, Thomas Greer.
The owners believe it had to be a large group that stole the kettle who now might try to sell the copper.
"At least three to four because I'm thinking it's around 400 pounds,” said Jodi Greer. “I mean, it was pretty hefty so for them to pick it up they had to have some kind of extreme muscle and to lift it in the bed of a truck or something."
The owners said they are offering a reward to anyone with any information to the missing kettle.
"Anybody that can help us get the kettle returned we definitely have a sweet reward for them,” said Thomas Greer.
The store owners say they plan to install security cameras.
Known for their chocolate covered strawberries and caramel apples, Kopper Kettle was founded in 1925. They’ve been at their location on Alma Highway since the 50’s.
Crawford County authorities are investigating the crime. Copper theft continues to make headlines across the country. Thieves make money by selling the metal to be melted down.
If you have any information on this crime, you’re asked to call Crime Stoppers at (479) 78-CRIME.