Popping Up Happiness

The sisters behind Just Pop In! serve up cheer.

It’s hard to believe the little Just Pop In! popcorn stand on the corner of Broad Ripple and Guilford avenues founded by twin sisters Mandy Selke and Carly Swift turned 21 years old this past November. Now settled nicely into its new home nestled along the Monon Trail, the business has expanded to all parts of the U.S. through mail order and a location at the airport. The twins don’t seem surprised by their success. “Everyone loves pops,” Selke laughs, using their family nickname for popcorn. Swift, a little more reserved, yet exuding the same enthusiasm, nods in agreement. “Popcorn is essential.”

When the sisters moved to Indy in 1999, they settled in Broad Ripple because the cozy, close-knit community reflected the delight and warmth they wanted to share and made them feel like they belonged.

“We were drawn to how people here loved it. It made so much sense for us to put our roots down here,” Selke says. Swift adds, “Just the history here … a place for our kids
to go to school. All of it.”

They relocated to their current site in 2018, where they branched out to hosting champagne brunches and birthday parties. “We’ve had this land since 2008 with the dream of building something full of joy,” says Selke. The special gatherings they plan are their way of spreading joy.

But “special” isn’t a strong enough word to describe what they create. Recently asked by a neighbor with stage 4 cancer to plan his 64th birthday party, the twins say arranging such a significant event is an example of what they feel is their calling. A love of popcorn is in their DNA, instilled by their grandfather’s love of sharing the buttery snack. It’s a tradition that evolved into the multifaceted business they operate today. “It’s not just about popcorn,” they say. “Popcorn is a tradition that symbolizes something that makes us happy and want to celebrate. It’s our North Star for creating happiness.”