Bakery struggling in pandemic gets needed boost from customers

A longtime Kenosha bakery is experiencing ups and downs during the coronavirus pandemic. Just like any small business, the worry now is -- what to do to stay afloat.

Oliver's Bakery in Kenosha has made life pretty sweet for its customers. 

"It has been a staple in Kenosha," said Anne Benson, bakery owner.

Anne Benson

But the pandemic has been sprinkling stress and worry on the owner -- with no way to sugarcoat the impact of COVID-19.

"All cakes went from full sheets, half sheets, 12-inch down to 7-inch, single pieces," Benson said. "I was scared, I was upset." 

Benson vented on Facebook about the reality that the business was struggling.

"I woke up at two in the morning and looked at my bank account and went, 'Oh my goodness. How am I going to make it? I have payroll this week and I just found out that day that I didn’t qualify for the new PPP loan.'"

Her social media post was a recipe for success.

"I had lines out the door around the block," Benson said.

The next day, everything sold out by 7:30 a.m. With business rising for the next two weeks, the baked goods had zero shelf life.

"They didn’t care what they bought. They bought everything. By the end of the day I had one pie left in my whole store," Benson said.

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The community's support remains consistent. But through all the layers of the pandemic, the icing on the cake for Benson is...

"They do appreciate small businesses and they want us to stick around," Benson said.

If you would like to support Oliver's Bakery, the owner said a constant flow of business is better than a surge -- and to pre-order.

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