By Meadow Campbell, Opinion Editor
On March 31, Crawford County joined the list of Pennsylvania counties under a stay at home order. Because of the lockdown, many local businesses are struggling to adapt.
Small businesses in Meadville and surrounding towns are offering take out or deliveries to supply customers with the things they want. With no dine-in options in the area, people are left to go through a drive-through, pick up carry-out, or cook at home. But what about dessert? Everyone loves dessert, and one local business owner is going to great lengths to make sure no one goes without sweet treats during the shutdown.
Sarah Chapp, owner of Confections of a Cake Lover (CCL) at 896 Market Street in Meadville, has expressed over social media that adjusting to the shutdown has been hard. “Our first week [since online sales] we saw a decrease in business,” Chapp said. “But by the second week, we were back up to the same sales strength as before the shutdown.”
According to Chapp, she and her staff spent a lot of time brainstorming how to increase online sales and create new products for their customers. “We could sense that there were going to be changes coming,” Chapp said. “Business itself was going really well, but we saw what was happening in other cities.” Thinking about all the parents who would be at home with their kids led to the idea of cupcake and cookie kits.
The cookie kits are $20 and include a dozen cookies, four frosting bags, and sprinkle mixes. Titles like “rawrsome dinosaurs,” “lost in space,” and “sasquatch under the stars” describe the theme of each kit, and Chapp offers free online videos to help kids decorate their desserts. “It’s an extra way for us to get our product into households,” Chapp said. “The kits are being used to keep kids at home occupied.” Cupcake kits range from $25-$30.
All kits can be ordered online or by phone at (814) 336-1338 and picked up at the shop or delivered to any Meadville address free of charge. For Chapp and her staff, the kits have provided a bright spot: “We love seeing [the kids]’ creations. And the videos have been a fun interactive learning experience.” In addition to the kits, the CCL site also offers sugar cookies, salted caramel cookie bars, pints of cookie dough and much more to satisfy any sweet tooth.
In times like these, supporting small businesses in the area is essential. These businesses serve our community, and we should help hold them together in this time of need. Next time your parents ask what you want for dessert, think about ordering something sweet from Confections of a Cake Lover. You won’t be disappointed.
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Journalism Adviser, Saegertown Jr. Sr. High School