Jaimie Mayer said there was only one perfect way to sum up opening 2nd Street Bistro and Bakery in Boonville for the first time a month ago — a scene from the film, “Frozen.”
Many know the scene. Anna’s excited for Elsa’s inauguration and she sings about throwing open the doors of the castle.
“That’s literally how I felt,” Mayer said about opening the doors to the new shop on the square. “I could have been dancing around town, swinging from the windows.”
Mayer said the road to opening the new location has been long, but rewarding. She said the business has gone from selling baked goods at the Warrick County Farmers Market to opening 2nd Street Sweets attached to her in-laws business Shabby Sheek to now opening in the newly renovated location a couple of doors down.
Mayer said she got into baking when she was young in Upstate New York. She said she learned to cook from her mother and grandmother as well as her great grandmother who worked as a baker for a local hospital.
“I always liked it,” she said.
Then, after high school, Mayer said she moved to Texas to be a part of a facility where missionaries trained before heading out into the world. There, she worked as a manager of a coffee and sandwich shop.
“Everything about it was what I loved,” she said. “I always said to myself that was my dream job.”
It was there that Mayer met her husband Elijah, who was from Boonville. They moved back together and got married, but Mayer said forward progress seemed to be stalled as they battled through years of infertility.
Mayer said she gave birth to her twins through in vitro fertilization after four years and then was surprised six months later when she became pregnant with her third son. After the birth of her third son, Mayer said she looked forward to the next chapter of her life.
“I woke up on New Year’s Day 2012 and I thought, ‘Okay, you know, I have travelled, I have known people all over the world and I have worked really hard to have kids and now I’m a mom. Now what do I want to do with my life?’ ” she said.
Mayer said she got a foot in the door decorating cakes, but it wasn’t necessarily her calling. She said she started to find interesting recipes, people started making orders and she ultimately set up a booth selling her baked goods at the Warrick County Farmers Market out of demand.
“Then the health inspector called me into her office,” she said.
Because Mayer was so successful, she said she was told she needed to upscale to a real kitchen or quit. She said Elijah agreed that it was time to build a kitchen.
After running 2nd Street Sweets through Shabby Sheek, Mayer said her in-laws offered to sell her the 130 year old building at 111 2nd Street.
“The long term goal, I think, was always to have this,” she said.
There was only two bedrooms upstairs, but Mayer said she and Elijah went to work stripping out the building and not only making the apartment upstairs a home for their family of seven and three cats, but also renovated the shop and kitchen downstairs making the space an extension of their home, keeping the original bricks from the building which hang her children’s artwork.
Mayer said the goal wasn’t to have a certain style, but to be inviting.
“We want it to be more your home,” she said. “We want you to feel rested, relaxed and very welcome.”
Through eight years baking, Mayer said she is still surprised at the outpouring of support she gets for what she does. She said people get excited about the homemade bread on each of the sandwiches made at the shop, but that is the way she has always made sandwiches for herself.
“I feel like I’ve always been a gourmet sandwich maker,” she said. “Now I’m making it for a whole town.”
Ultimately, Mayer said there would have been no other place for her shop than in Boonville on the square. She said the community has supported her family and friends through tough times and she wants to do the same for the town.
“The community rallies around people that are suffering. It’s just a great community,” she said. “We have some great people here. For me, I want to be a blessing to the people. ... I want to be able to give to this town. The people here have really meant a lot to me and I just want to give it back.”
The Bistro and Bakery carried over staples from before like Mayer’s sweet rolls and homemade English muffins. But now, customers can enjoy breakfast and lunch sandwiches, gluten free wraps and other baked treats.
Mayer also said she is willing to work with customers with allergies and can offer gluten free and dairy free options when available. The shop also offers free local delivery.
The shop is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday. For information visit 2nd Street Bistro and Bakery on Facebook or call to make an order at 812-573-8887.