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2 Women + 3 Small Businesses = Sweet Success

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They've been part of Le Claire's "growth spurt" by starting not one, but three businesses in one year.

Rebecca Burns and Jennifer Williams own The Shameless Chocoholic, Sweet Dreams Guest House, and Jones St. Java House on Jones Street off Cody Road in Downtown Le Claire, Iowa.

"I must be  a little bit on the ambitious side for most people, but I love what I do and if it makes sense to me and I can do it, I'm going to push for it and make a success of it," said Burns.

Burns is a Chocolatier. She says The Shameless Chocoholic offers more than 80 varieties of chocolate, including truffles, butter creams, caramels, and "shmurtles" - their version of turtles.

"We use all fresh ingredients," described Burns. "We use no preservatives whatsoever in any of our products and everything is made by hand from scratch. I have sought out the highest quality chocolate that I can find. I've tried every different kind out there and I'm extremely particular about the process of how it's made and the quality of what goes into it and the look of it."

Meanwhile, Williams' favorite area of the store is something they call 'The Nostalgic Room.' It's full of jars of candy... some you don't see in stores anymore.

"I don't know what's more fun for me - the reaction of the little kids that come back here and there's so much candy that their minds can't handle it or the adults that come back here and they say - Oh my gosh. You have Fizzies?" said Williams. "It's something that they find that just takes them right back down Memory Lane to their childhood."

It's not Memory Lane. It's Jones Street. Located right off Cody Road - the main stretch of Downtown Le Claire - Burns and Williams says it's the up and coming area as Le Claire continues to grow. While The Shameless Chocoholic and Sweet Dreams Guest House ("Yes, you really do sleep above the candy store and you really do smell the chocolate," said Williams) opened in 2013, Jones St. Java House opened in 2014, when more than a dozen other new businesses opened their doors in Downtown Le Claire. Already in 2015, there have been five new businesses.

"I'm very proud to say I'm a business owner in Le Claire," said Williams. "All of the business owners are so amazing and supportive."

The customers are supportive as well. Burns says they come from all over the area, country, and world.

"We've had people from Australia, Germany, all over the place coming though," she said. "We're fortunate enough that everything really has a calling and everybody has something in particular that they come in for that they love."

The Shameless Chocoholic is open 7 days a week, but you can also order products online by clicking here.

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