It’s a cold, snowy day in a small, tight-knit town. Downtown Grand Ledge is dead, apart from one business that still has its doors open an hour after their marked closing time.
It may be only 1 p.m, but business-owner Beth Augustine has been there since 2:30 in the morning, baking fresh pastries and bagels, the same way she does every single day.
Their Flour Child bakery opened its doors on the streets of downtown Grand Ledge on Oct. 4, 2016. Since then, Beth and her husband Terrance have received an overwhelmingly positive response from the community.
“They know your name, they’re hometown people, their kids go to school here, they’re a true part of the community,” said Grand Ledge resident and regular customer Iris Schiller.
Schiller has been a customer of Beth’s since before Flour Child had opened, back when Beth was baking out of her kitchen at home, and selling her creations at the local farmers market.
“It got to a point where I could no longer contain it in the house, so we figured why not open a shop?,” Beth said.
After making that decision, Beth and Terrance’s small, local bakery has not only become a staple of the Grand Ledge community, but was also voted best bakery in the Lansing area on MLive, with over 50 percent of number one votes out of 15 bakeries listed.
“It’s really amazing, I don’t know how else to say it,” said Beth. “I think a lot of times you don’t know what you mean to other people, I just do it because I love it.”
It’s not unlikely for Grand Ledge schools to bring students into Flour Child and if you come in at the right time, Beth may be teaching a class of her own in the kitchen.
“What I would like to do is have classes where I can teach younger kids how to do things,” said Beth. “I taught little girls how to make cookies, and just finished up teaching 13-year-old girls how to make croissants for a birthday party.”
Beth and Terrance have renovation plans to accommodate the recent growth in business, as well as Beth’s plans to continue teaching.
“We’re going to blow up the wall next to us, and essentially double our counter-space,” said Terrance. “It’ll be a fun project to do with the kids.”
On top of that, the kitchen space will also be increased in order to fulfill Beth’s desire to continue teaching and will allow Flour Child to expand their hours and open up a lunch menu.
“I think it’s great, it brings people downtown and is what Grand Ledge has always been about,” said Schiller. “We’re just lucky to have them here.”