BOARDMAN, Ohio — A new, sweet spot was celebrated yesterday, bringing out neighbors and members of the Youngstown/Warren Regional Chamber.
A ribbon cutting was held Wednesday morning for Nothing Bundt Cakes, 813 Boardman-Poland Road. Those gathered welcomed owners Cecilia and Ron Bolar, formerly of Texas, to the Mahoning Valley. Ron was unable to attend the event, but stepping in was daughter Nicole, who flew in from Austin to help with the ceremony.
Originally from Dallas, the Bolars fell in love with Nothing Bundt cakes as they researched the company. They determined that Ron could interact with customers and handle the customer service aspect, while Cecilia would bake and decorate.
The only issue was no availability to open a franchise in Texas.
“When we decided to open a Nothing Bundt Cake, there were no open territories in Dallas,” Cecilia Bolar said.
They were told if they wanted to open a store, they’d have to move. The Bolars reached out to the corporate office to see if they could open a store in the Youngstown area after discussing coming to the Mahoning Valley to visit friends, Bolar said.
Married for 28 years, the Bolars decided to sell everything they could and move to the Valley.
While their hard work and leap of faith are each paying off, it isn’t lost on the Bolars that moving across the country to follow a dream isn’t easy.
“To pick up and move… Most people can’t do what we did,” Cecilia Bolar said.
Gallery images include Cecilia and Nicole Bolar inside the new bakery, employee Jessica Moore handing a pre-packaged gift to a customer, and an assortment of bundt cakes.
The Bolars left careers in Texas – Cecilia was an established photographer with her own business, McCoy’s Photography, a company she purchased from its namesake in 2002 – and together they owned nine Edible Arrangements locations in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
They were asked by friends, family and clients where they would stay once they got to Ohio.
“We were like, ‘We don’t know. We’re just winging it,’ ” Bolar said.
About a year ago is when the conversation with the corporate office began, added Nicole Bolar. Within four months, the store in Boardman was coming together and the Bolars were still in the process of moving, she said.
Cecilia sang praises of the Nothing Bundt Cake staff, saying they have been “amazing.” The Boardman Nothing Bundt Cakes store is the first in the Youngstown area, but the seventh in the Cleveland market, joining sister bakeries in Avon, South Euclid, Strongsville, Fairlawn, Canton and Stow. There are 16 Nothing Bundt Cakes in Ohio.
The bakery offers four sizes of bundt cake: bite-size Bundtinis, Bundtlets, 8-inch, and 10-inch Bundt cakes. Unique glasses and serveware are sold at the store, which can be wrapped with an individualized Bundt cake for any occasion, Bolar said.
While the cakes are “addicting” and will keep customers coming back, the Bolars are already ingraining themselves in the community, she said. The family was drawn to the supportive nature the Mahoning Valley has of its businesses, they said, leading them to want to be part of it.
“We love this community,” Bolar said. “We came here to visit and fell in love with the area.”
“It means a lot since we came all the way from Texas, not knowing anyone in the area and to receive such a warm welcome, it make it feel a lot more like home,” Nicole Bolar added.
The hometown pride of the Valley is a testament to the region, making it inviting to visitors.
“I think it speaks to this area, what a tight-knit valley we are,” said Jackie Jacobson, account executive with the Youngstown/Warren Regional Chamber, who attended the ribbon cutting.
Located in Presidential Square, Nothing Bundt Cake is open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday.
On Friday, 20% of sales between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. will be donated to the Apple Breast Cancer Warrior Foundation. Then from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, up to 300 individual Bundtlets will be given out, one per guest as supplies last.
Saturday also marks the last day to enter the e-club giveaway for a chance to win free Bundtlets for a year.
Nothing Bundt Cakes was founded in 1997 in Las Vegas by Dena Tripp and Debbie Shwetz, and is based in Dallas. Since its inception, it has expanded to more than 400 franchised and corporate bakeries in more than 40 states and Canada.
Pictured at top: On hand for the event were Jessica Moore, Nothing Bundt Cakes employee; TJ and Stacey Ahmed, family friends; Gina Caracanas, Nothing Bundt Cakes employee; Cecilia Bolar, Nothing Bundt Cakes owner and daughter Nicole Bolar; and Alexis Wolfe, Kelsie Harshfeger, Nathan McClane and Kearstin Nelson, Nothing Bundt Cakes employees.