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Things couldn't have gone much better for Zack Redmon Tuesday.

His New Hope, Minnesota, popcorn shop — Redmon's Popcorn — was featured on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert the previous night, with Colbert's team creating a spiffy new ad for the 9-month-old store.

The ad plays off Redmon's own language comparing his flavors (including hot BBQ and banana pudding) to luxury cars. Here's the segment.

The following day, Redmon told Bring Me The News, he had long lines, snaking out of his small shop on Winnetka Avenue into the building's hallway. Customers scooped up his popcorn and online orders backed up. On Facebook, Redmon promised to quickly restock and thanked people for coming by.

The national TV spotlight had been kind to the former barber and new entrepreneur.

Then Wednesday morning came. And abruptly, Redmon had to close his popcorn shop indefinitely due to "unforeseen circumstances," he wrote on Facebook. 

"It just knocked the wind out of my sails," Redmon told Bring Me The News. "I'm not mad about it, not upset. I'm taking it for what it is."

The cause was an abrupt county inspection, which Redmon said determined the storefront was too small for its purpose, and that he needs to use a commercial kitchen rather than making the popcorn in his home with a cottage food license. 

Bring Me The News has reached out to Hennepin County for more information.

Redmon called the news "not an easy pill to swallow," considering he'd been running the shop since February with no issues and no violations. Nor are the requests feasible for a nascent business, he said. Commercial kitchens are in demand and expensive, and Redmon said there are no assurances, even if he made all the changes required, the current shop space will be immune to any further code violations.

His plan is to "nip it in the bud" altogether.

Redmon said he will sell his popcorn online only for now, while looking for a new, larger space he can move into sometime in the future. His goal is to stay in New Hope. 

The city's mayor, Kathi Hemken, has been in contact with Redmon, and the city said it connected him to a local business networking group to help support his shop.

“The City of New Hope knows small businesses are an extremely important part of our community," Hemken said in a statement, adding they "hope to see him operating in New Hope again soon.”

Redmon, who began selling his popcorn after losing his barbering job during the pandemic, is taking it in stride, approaching it as just the next problem to solve.

"It's something for me to learn as anew business owner," he said. "I made a mistake as far as getting a space that isn't big enough. It's a learning process and I'm OK with that."

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