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The year was 1974. The man was Robert Moehlman.

His vision?

He wanted to start a hobby involving kernels, oil and heat. Robert ended up starting this hobby in the basement of his Highland Ave. home in Burlington, IA.

It quickly turned into a high-demand business and decided to name it Big River Popcorn!

He operated with only three flavors of popcorn:

Butter, Cheese and his signature homemade Caramel Corn.

Over the years, the business grew out of his basement of his home to a downtown store front at 201 Central Ave. He eventually retired from his “hobby” of love in 1981 and sold Big River Popcorn to new owners ensuring it’s placement as a Burlington staple downtown.

As Big River Popcorn gained momentum and popularity in the decades to follow, it also obtained more product and flavor options. In 2006, the store moved from the Central Ave. location to 801 Jefferson Street. Some of the added flavors that became well liked include Dill Pickle, Happy Birthday Cake, and Mississippi Mud Ball. Sno-cone, Popcorn, and Cotton Candy machines became part of the Big River Popcorn family for rental options for parties and gatherings. It wasn’t until 2016 when a gentleman name Greg Flietner obtained ownership and operation of the business.

The relation to Robert Moehlman? His grandson.

The vision?

To bring Big River Popcorn back to it’s family roots and expand its geological footprint beyond the city limits of Burlington.

Since his take over, Greg has managed to launch Big River Popcorn online with shipping options to all 50 states. He has been heavily involved with local and tri-state community fundraisers. He launched a very successful popcorn bar option for wedding receptions and events. He made Big River Popcorn a household name creating new seasonal and year long flavor favorites dubbing the slogan “So Corny We’ll Make You Pop!” He engages his business throughout the community as a locally family owned business. Greg has his grandfather’s passion of this business flowing through him. He has turned this once “hobby” of kernels to a daily operation of “pop”ularity with family, friends and colleagues coast to coast!

You can check out Big River Popcorn’s location in downtown Mt. Pleasant:

114 North Main St., Suite 101, Mt. Pleasant, IA!

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