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Elkhart's Mini Delights Bake Shoppe cuts retail hours

After seeing walk-in sales dwindle over the past year, Mini Delights Bake Shoppe has decided to focus on its catering business.

Beginning Monday, Jan. 12, the downtown Elkhart cupcake shop will no longer have retail hours. The only way to get Mini Delights cupcakes will be in orders of five dozen or more placed ahead of time.

But owner Ashley Stone stresses that Mini Delights is definitely not going out of business.

Stone said the shop has seen fewer customers coming in to buy cupcakes over the last year. A year ago, they’d take in at least $200 a day from walk-in sales during the nonholiday season. These days, it’s more like $60.

Meanwhile, Stone and her staff have remained busy with large orders — for events, weddings and fundraisers with local schools — which make up 85 percent of the business.

Without retail hours, Stone said she’ll have more time to promote the brand and collaborate with local schools for fundraisers. Employees will also have more time to participate in events around the city.

Stone is especially looking forward to having more time to spend with her family.

“It allows more time for me to be home and be with them instead of here all the time,” she said.

Customers have voiced disappointment that there will no longer be walk-in hours at the cupcake shop, Stone said. Some have been supportive of the decision on the business’s Facebook page, while others think the five dozen minimum is too high.

Stone said she’s not going to be in the shop making cupcakes every day, so the order has to be big enough to make it worth the time. And with pre-ordering, she can continue to make the cupcakes fresh instead of keeping shelves stocked.

Stone said she might consider having special walk-in hours for holidays, such as Valentine’s Day.

For customers who want one last chance to pick up a dozen or two Mini Delights cupcakes, the shop’s final walk-in hours are 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 7, through Friday, Jan. 9.

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