An array of exhibits, exhilarating rides and elegant pageantry were not the only eye catchers at the 2021 Hancock County fair.

Among a variety of eatery options, sat a stand that was sweeter than most.

Chelsea Boling, owner of Hello Pop, struck success when she started making fruit and vegetable flavored ice pops for her young son to help soothe his sore gums from teething. The creation also introduced him to a variety of new foods.

Among the flavors offered are lemonade, pineapple, strawberry and watermelon.

“We felt like Hello Pop was a perfect business to collaborate with,” Independence Bank President Wade Gaynor expressed. “Not only to bring a new vendor to the Hancock County Fair, but it also helped maximize the dollars we raised for the schools.”

Boling’s family run business celebrated one year of operation in July, which served as an excellent fair treat as temperatures topped out in the 80’s.

Instead of pocketing the profits, Hello Pop is helping provide basic needs through an Independence Bank partnership.

“Hunger is something most of us have not experienced, but we all know how prevalent it is in our world today,” Gaynor added. “We want to do all we can to ensure these students don’t go hungry.”

A portion of the proceeds from the event sales were donated to the Hancock County Schools Family Resource Center Backpack program.

“This program runs off of community support,” North Hancock Elementary School Family Resource Center Coordinator Lacey Mosby said. “We are so grateful for any and everything we receive. We know how much it means to our families.”

FRYSCs are designed to enhance students’ abilities to succeed in school and provide school-based family support through programs and partnerships.

The mission remains reducing and removing non-academic barriers to learning as a means to enhance students’ academic success.

Through this collaboration, a record $400 was raised to help local children with related necessities. This is a significant increase in funds compared to previous years. The donation will help buy food which is unnoticeably placed in backpacks and sent home with students to provide weekend meals.

Little did the school-aged fair customers know that these pop purchases would be helping their peers.

Giving back to the community is an important lesson captured outside of the classroom.

The Bank regularly promotes financial literacy including providing education about saving, investing, and responsible spending through our Little Patriots Savings Club. Independence Bank will contribute $7.76 to the $10 minimum opening deposit to bring the starting balance to $17.76.

“Education is so important,” Hello Pop owner, Chelsea Boling stated. “It can help change lives. It was an honor to be part of this and to help start school on a positive note.”

Anyone who may be interested can contact Boling through the Hello Pop Facebook or Instagram pages. That is a great place to find us, too! Search ‘Independence Bank’ on all social media platforms.