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Community says goodbye to Rainbow

By: Liz Kellar The News Messenger
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Hundreds of Lincoln residents came out to say goodbye to Rainbow Market Saturday afternoon. The market is closing after 39 years. A farewell celebration organized by Jennifer Pattison and Charla Barringer featured the Lincoln High School marching band, music by Captains of Spaceship Earth, hot dogs grilled by the Lincoln Lions Club, as well as soda and cake. Mayor Primo Santini read a proclamation in honor of the market that said, in part, “Rainbow Market’s presence in the community has been instrumental in the success of many service organizations and non-profit groups.” The proclamation also honored the late George Kwong, who was “fondly known as the Candy Man, handing out candy to kids and his quick-witted one-liners to parents … He was indeed an infamous local character loved by all.” Don and Maurine Chandler were among many who signed a poster board with their best wishes. “We shopped here for 34 years,” Maurine Chandler said. “We used to bring our grandson in and George would always tell him to go get a candy bar … It’s a shame they’re closing.” Many visitors had stories about Kwong, but former employee Susan Morris said she got more than candy – she ended up with a husband after Kwong played matchmaker. “My husband, Marty, and I met here,” she said while perusing the aisles with daughter Sarah, 13. “George introduced us — and we’ve been married 18 years. “It is very bizarre” to see the store close, she said. “I can remember going to the old Rainbow (at the store that is now Ace Hardware). George used to give me candy.”