Couple Celebrates Popping the Question With Soda Speciality Store

The newest addition to Campbell's downtown, Rocket Fizz of Campbell has romantic beginnings.

The sweet shop at the corner of E. Campbell Avenue and Second Street has been hinting at its explosive confections for more than a month. A colorful rocket appeared on one of the windows one morning and just as quickly as it appeared, over the weekend it disappeared.

opened its doors unofficially June 19, and the response was overwhelming. Before opening, there was a line forming outside. Within the first seven minutes, there were more than 30 people in the store, co-owner Chris Dunn says.

The store carries between 500 and 600 types of soda, from the nostalgic, to the foreign, to the just plain weird (in a very fun and delicious way, of course!).

All the sodas are the same price throughout the store and the business offers the option to make-your-own six pack of sodas.

Along with the soda, the store also carries about 1,500 different types of candy, retro music poster recreations and other goodies.

The store is having its grand opening ceremony this afternoon at 5:30 p.m. The Mayor of Campbell, will be there along with the Silicon Valley Roller Girls skating around and handing out samples

Campbell Patch met up with the duo behind the delicacies, Lisa Pelgrim and Chris Dunn, and talked about growing up, the many names for soda and how it all began.

Campbell Patch: So before becoming small business owners in downtown Campbell, what were you doing?

Chris Dunn: I was a project manager at a software company. Originally, I came out here as an engineer for a semiconductor company and then was an IT manager. This is the latest reinvention of myself.

Lisa Pelgrim: I am a graphic designer, I owned a children's clothes wholesale business and volunteered at my kids' school. Before that, it was all high tech.

Patch: Where did you grow up?

Dunn: I grew up in Texas. In 1990, I came out here. I was only supposed to be out here for six months but something went wrong with my position back in Texas. They gave me the choice to stay here or go to Colorado. It's been 21 years this week that I've been in California.

Pelgrim: I originally grew up in Hawaii. From there, I was in Palo Alto and that's where Chris and I met. California is a nice halfway point between Hawaii and Texas. It's not too cold for me.

Patch: So why a soda store?

Dunn: Lisa and I had been looking for projects to do together. We had a few leads but those didn't pan out. Then we found Rocket Fizz. We talked to the owners and they were really family-oriented. Everyone's been super nice and a lot of fun dealing with them all. It's a young franchise so they don't get caught up in the minutia.

Pelgrim: Well, actually, this was our anniversary gift to each other. We are celebrating 15 years this year. Everything about the idea was, like, really fun.

We thought, "we didn't have to buy crystal or watches for each other, we can have candy!"

We had dinner down the street on our anniversary and signed the papers.

Patch: What was your first soda?

Dunn: Probably a Dr. Pepper. But in Texas, we don't call it soda. We would say, "Let's go get a coke."

I guess it really depends on regional dialect. Some call it soda, some call it coke and others call it pop.

Pelgrim: Well, the times were different back then and my parents would go to this club in Hawaii. My twin sister and I would wait for them outside and they would make us these Shirley Temples with extra cherries. Those were the first, probably.

Patch: What's your current favorite soda?

Dunn: Rocket Fizz just came out with its own line of sodas this summer and there's this one, watermelon, when it's ice cold it tastes just like a watermelon. That's my favorite right now but that always changes.

Pelgrim: Cream soda. And birch and root beers.

Patch: Why did Campbell make sense as a location for your business?

Dunn: The downtown Campbell are has done a lot to reinvent itself. We have had nothing but warm welcomes here.

The business owners here have bent over backwards to help us out and the art deco building goes well with the retro vibe in the store. We had looked at other locations but we thought this was a perfect fit.

Pelgrim: Both my husband and I grew up in smaller towns. Silicon Valley is so big. And one of the things we love about Campbell is that there's still a small town feel here.

Life in the Bay Area is so fast-paced and stressful. We can't slow it down but we can sugar coat it!

Brittany Patterson June 23, 2011 at 08:48 PM
This was really cute. It's always great to get to know the people behind new businesses- especially a store this sweet.


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