Between a park, a Jo-Ann fabric store, and a library in Ballard, the space Sweet Mickey's inhabits is ideal for a candy store. A mural of sweets swirls near the door. Glass cases lining the store's mint-green interior contain every imaginable hard candy and some unimaginable gummy candies—including gummy dentures and gummy army men.

Presiding over this edible rainbow is a portrait of Grandma Mickey, owner Randy Brinker's real-life grandma and his candy-loving inspiration. A former Dell technology salesman, Randy—who was wearing an apron with "Candy Randy" embroidered on it when I met him—lives directly above the shop, and says he has considered cutting a hole in the floor so that he can slide down a fireman pole to work. "The kids would love that," he said. "The building owners, perhaps not."

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