The Candy Takeback Program: Enjoy a Healthier Halloween Minus the Headaches

Do you love celebrating Halloween with your family but worry about your child eating too many sweets? Our Candy Takeback Program is here to help!

Halloween Candy: The Sweet and the Not-So-Sweet

Managing the Halloween stash can be challenging for parents and care givers. A little bit of candy is okay in moderation. However, candy shouldn’t replace healthier foods such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables – which can happen especially when we have access to large amounts of it, as in the case of trick-or-treat bags and other Halloween goodies.

Sugary foods such as candy can cause rapid spikes in blood sugar that can negatively affect our mood and health. Over time, this can lead to other health problems such as obesity and chronic disease. 

How Our Candy Takeback Program Works

To encourage healthier eating habits and help parents navigate the days following Halloween, NDMI – in partnership with Munson Healthcare – organizes candy drop-off locations throughout the region. These “sweet spots” give parents, children, and candy givers a place to donate some of their leftover candy. 

Last year, we successfully collected over 830 pounds, distributing it to local veterans’ organizations as well as military members stationed overseas, giving deserving adults something sweet to enjoy.

How to Participate

This year, our program is larger than ever, with several newly added drop-off sites spanning four counties including Antrim, Charlevoix, Crawford, Grand Traverse, Kalkaska, Manistee, Otsego, and Wexford. To participate, bring a portion of your leftover candy to a location near you (see below) Friday, Nov. 1 through Tuesday, Nov. 5.

Questions? Call 231-935-9227.


2019 Candy Drop-off Sites

Find the nearest location and best drop-off date & time below.

Antrim County

Cherryland Middle School
707 E. Third Street
Elk Rapids, MI 49629

The classroom that donates the most candy will win a prize!

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - During school hours
  • Monday, Nov. 4 - During school hours
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 - During school hours

Not open to the public - only school staff and students.


Charlevoix County

Charlevoix Wellness Workshop
411 Bridge Street
Charlevoix, MI 49720

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - 9:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4 -9:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 -9:00 am - 4:30 pm

Crawford County

District Health Department #10
501 Norway Street
Grayling, MI 49738

Drop off candy to be entered for a drawing for a gift card.

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4 - 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 - 8:00 am - 4:30 pm

Viking Wellness Center
Grayling High School - Room C309

1135 North Old US 27
Grayling, MI 49738

Drop off candy to be entered for a drawing for a gift card.

  • Monday, Nov. 4 - 7:30 am - 4:00 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 - 7:30 am - 4:00 pm

Not open to the public - only school staff and students.


Grand Traverse County

Munson Diabetes Education
Munson Professional Building, Room 210

1221 Sixth Street
Traverse City, MI 49684

Drop off candy to be entered for a drawing for a Dunham's gift card and a water bottle.

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - 9:00 am - 2:00 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4 - 9:00 am - 2:00 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 - 9:00 am - 2:00 pm

Munson Community Health Library
Foster Family Community Health Center, 
Suite 0103
550 Munson Ave
Traverse City, MI 49686

Drop off candy to be entered for a drawing for a Dunham's gift card and a water bottle.

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - 8:30 am - 3:00 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4 - 8:30 am - 3:00 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5- 8:30 am - 3:00 pm

Grand Traverse County Health Department
2600 LaFranier Road
Traverse City, MI 49686

Anyone who drops off candy will receive a toothbrush and toothpaste from Dental Clinics North.

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - 8:30 am - 4:00 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4 - 8:30 am - 4:00 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 - 8:30 am - 4:00 pm

YMCA - Central
1213 W. Civic Center Drive
Traverse City, MI 49686

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - 5:30 am - 8:00 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4 - 5:30 am - 8:00 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 - 5:30 am - 8:00 pm

YMCA - South
3000 Racquet Club Drive
Traverse City, MI 49684

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - 9:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4 - 9:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 - 9:00 am - 9:00 pm

YMCA - West
3700 Silver Lake Road 
Traverse City, MI 49686

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - 5:30 am - 10:00 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4 - 5:30 am - 10:00 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 - 5:30 am - 10:00 pm

Kalkaska County

District Health Department #10
625 Courthouse Drive
Kalkaska, MI 49646

Drop off candy to be entered for a drawing for a gift card.

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4 - 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 - 8:00 am - 4:30 pm

Kalkaska Senior Center
303 S. Coral Street 
Kalkaska, MI 49646

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4 - 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 - 8:00 am - 4:30 pm

Manistee County

Munson Healthcare Manistee Hospital
Hospital Registration Desk

1465 E. Parkdale Ave. 
Manistee, MI 49660

Anyone who drops off candy will receive Munson Healthcare swag.

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - Anytime
  • Saturday, Nov. 2 - Anytime
  • Sunday, Nov. 3 - Anytime
  • Monday, Nov. 4 - Anytime
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 - Anytime

Manistee Health & Fitness Center
1345 E. Parkdale Ave.
Manistee, MI 49660

Anyone who drops off candy will receive Munson Healthcare swag.

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - 5:30 am - 7:00 pm
  • Saturday, Nov. 2 - 8:00 am - 12:00 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4 - 5:30 am - 8:00 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 - 5:30 am - 8:00 pm

Otsego County

Gaylord Blue Devils Wellness Center
Gaylord High School

90 Livingston Blvd
Gaylord, MI 49735

Drop off candy to be entered for a drawing for a gift card.

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - 7:30 am - 4:00 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4 - 7:30 am - 4:00 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 - 7:30 am - 4:00 pm

Not open to the public - only school staff and students.


Wexford County

Cadillac Hospital
Hospital Registration Desk

400 Hobart Street
Cadillac, MI 49601

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - 9:00 am - 4:00 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4 - 9:00 am - 4:00 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 - 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

District Health Department #10
521 Cobb Street
Cadillac, MI 49601

  • Friday, Nov. 1: 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4: 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5: 8:00 am - 4:30 pm

Cadillac Area YMCA
9845 Campus Dr.
Cadillac, MI

Receive a free day pass for anyone who drops off 1lb of candy or more.

  • Friday, Nov. 1: 6:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Saturday, Nov. 2: 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Sunday, Nov. 3: 12:00 pm - 8:00 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4: 6:00 am - 9:00 pm

Wexford Adolescent Wellness Center
Cadillac Junior High

500 Chestnut Street
Cadillac, MI 49601

  • Friday, Nov. 1 - 7:45 am - 3:00 pm
  • Monday, Nov. 4 - 7:45 am - 3:00 pm
  • Tuesday, Nov. 5 - 7:45 am - 3:00 pm

Not open to the public - only school staff and students.


Interested in handing out healthier treats this Halloween?

Help encourage a more healthful Halloween for children and parents alike with these sweet alternatives!

  • Glow sticks
  • Fake mustaches
  • Punch balloons
  • Sticky hands
  • Black/orange rubber bracelets or slap bracelets
  • Eyeball themed bouncy balls
  • Mini playdough
  • Spooky stickers/temporary tattoos
  • Coins (pocket change)
  • Bubbles
  • Pretzels
  • Goldfish
  • Halloween hand popcorn