The Marblehad Soap Company is as busy as a beehive, and that’s just one of the reasons for its success at 210 W. Main St. in the Village of Marblehead.
“Honest-to-goodness raw honey is one of the main draws for our many customers. To keep them coming back we tend 180 beehives each year,” said owner Patti Wandover, whose unique company keeps its shelves stocked with handcrafted organic soaps, local honey, essential oils, candles, canned items, gift items, aromatherapy, and wide range of local and regional arts and crafts.
Wandover’s granddaughter, Aria, who’s just three years old, is already tending bees, a fourth generation beekeeper with Wandover and her dad, Dan Kaminski, and son, Steve.
Walk through the door of the Marblehead Soap Company and the subtle soap fragrances will slow you down and make you smile. Wandover stocks more than 300 types of bar soap, all made with natural ingredients. No nasty phosphates hanging around this shop.
“We rely on essential oils that are good for your skin,” said Wandover. “Such oils as coconut, olive and soybean that moisturizes and feeds your skin.”
Five bars are about $20, and the hard soaps will last.
“We used to have a store in Point Clinton, and our soaps were really popular with the guys,” she said. “Once they tried them, they discovered they cleansed a guy’s skin properly. They loved products such as a men’s shaving cream and a very popular men’s beard wash.
There are always surprises.
One the last trip, a line of Ernest Hemingway Bloody Mary Mix named after his 1926 novel, “Sun Always Rises,” caught my eye. Wandover said it’s very, very tasty, and only about $12 for a large bottle.
“We’ve started to ship our soaps and other products all over the place, whether it’s for weddings or baby showers, or special soaps named for the Lake Erie Islands. There is a demand for our soaps for the many B&Bs around the area, the yacht clubs, and places that want something special.
“They all want top shelf, and we specialize in top-notch ingredients.”
Teri Cassell, the director of Marblehead Peninsula Chamber of Commerce, said Wandover, and The Marblehead Soap Company, do a lot within the community that most people don’t know about. “They also do a lot for children, their customers, future business owners, and community members and supporters of the area,” said Cassell.
The Marblehead Chamber of Commerce also presents the D.S. Kirkpatrick Award each year. It was established in 1979 to honor the dedication and unselfish devotion to the principles of service to the community through the Chamber of Commerce.
This year’s winner was Dave Barth, who has served as past President of the Marblehead Chamber as well as on the Chamber’s Board of Directors for many years. Barth retired last year from Bay Point Marina and still continues to give of his time within the community as well as volunteering for many Chamber events.