So.. this is my first blog as the co-owner, executive chef, head baker, chief bottle washer (oh wait, that’s Brian!) and creator of yum! of Mogollon Moose Bakery. I’m not even sure if anyone will be interested in what I will share, but I’m finally going to give in to my own marketing advice that I have given for years and start writing.
About me… I’m a marketer that loves to bake
Mogollon Moose Bakery has been a life dream turned reality this year. I cofounded a marketing company, Infinite Reach Agency (based in Phoenix) in 2013 and loved every minute of building that agency and growing my team of 12. I set up the company to be remote, to allow us to work from anywhere and I have to say, I have the best team ever.
Katelyn, our operations/marketing manager is holding down the fort while I am focused on getting the bakery up and running. I feel so fortunate that our team is strong and competent and can handle taking care of our clients for the interim. Kellie (our social media account manager) Alli and Ashley (both of our graphic designers) are also very involved with our marketing and creating our Mogollon Moose brand. I hear something about our graphics at the bakery almost every day and I’m very proud that they helped bring my vision to reality. 🙂
Last October, we made a life change that moved us to Payson, Arizona – I absolutely fell in love with the town, but most of all – the people. There is a sense of family here that I love. After living in Alaska for 20+ years (spent the last 8 in the Valley) I feel like I’m home – very much like I did when I lived in Alaska so this has become my little hometown Alaska…right in the heart of Rim Country in the high desert mountains of Arizona. It’s special.
I didn’t expect to open up a bakery so soon in my life journey but timing has everything to do with it. After moving here, I found there were not many options for a kale salad or even just a good balanced sandwich filled with enough protein and high fiber carbs to get me through to dinner.
I noticed that Payson had plenty of fast food restaurants (and they’re still coming!) but they were and are….missing the mark. So I started researching and together with my husband Brian, and sons Brandon and Beau – we decided that now was the time to launch our food concept.
I’ve hung my marketing hat for an apron – for now….
All of the recipes have been in development for over 12 years and after my significant weight loss (I’ve officially lost 150 pounds. Yay!) – were also adjusted and tested to be sure they met a few objections. One being that they were healthy and delicious!
With that said, our baked goods aren’t all healthy. As Alexis Bechman wrote in the Payson Round Up “The menu at the Mogollon Moose is not all healthy though. Church is baking up something sweet everyday.” Read the full article for our history here.
She’s right. Over the past 4 weeks I’ve baked dozens of 12 different types of gluten free and non-gluten free muffins, baked and sold over 90 loaves of bread, made a host of different pastries, invented a few new treats such as our already famous Chocolate Butter Braid and created a new spiced pear bread pudding muffin from our day old croissants.
We love being a small batch bakery. Every day I can choose to bake specialty items based off of ingredients I have on hand which allows me to reduce waste and go with seasonal ingredients. I’m loving it and so do our guests! I’ve made great use of plums, nectarines, peaches, strawberries and other summer berries, pears, figs, apples and even baked some kiwi-strawberry scones!
It takes a village, indeed
We’ve experienced some amazing support since starting this journey. Bobby Davis and the Town of Payson has been really great to work with. (Just a side note: Bobby Davis is running for a seat on the Star Valley town council —click here to learn about Bobby and his plans to help Star Valley grow.)
Chris Bertone and Jaimie Hilgendorf of The Rim Country Regional Chamber of Commerce were there for us when we really needed a boost. They planned our ribbon cutting ceremony on August 5th – 20 of our new dear friends from the business community attended and stood with us as we opened our bakery! Including former Payson Mayor, Kenny Evans and Payson Town Council-woman Su Connel. How special is that? Just the remembrance of that day still brings tears to my eyes.
Everyone has been very helpful and encouraging and the people who come and dine at our bakery have just made the whole experience remarkable. Without the help, love and encouragement from everyone, we wouldn’t have made it this far. We’re so grateful… Thank you all!
We’ve seen so many smiling faces since we’ve opened on August 1st. I feel so blessed that we get to make new friends every day (and get some hugs in there too) and have old friends stop by and see us too! It’s been a really special journey, and we’ve been very surprised by how well received our little bakery has been in our dusty little cowboy town.
We have regulars that bless us each day by coming in and enjoying our coffee/espresso or having breakfast or lunch. It’s really neat. I feel at home welcoming them in and am so excited to hear about their life stories. I tell our guests daily – “Thank you for giving us an opportunity to serve you today”… and I really mean every word. Thank you!
So that was my inaugural blog. This week we’re working on tightening our processes for better and faster service and I’m already planning ahead and designing our new fall menu. We want to stick with seasonal ingredients and I’m very excited about the possibilities of utilizing sweet potato, different squash, fall nuts and we’re looking at adding a new side to our breakfast sandwiches and serving soup starting later in September/early October.
If you have any comments, questions or suggestions please reach out. I’d love to hear them, get to know you and share from inside the bakery.
Till next time… and Thank YOU for your support!
Written with Love,
Owner, Executive Chef/Head Baker and Creator of Yum!