- Associated Press - Thursday, January 8, 2015

LOGANSPORT, Ind. (AP) - When the Kuns family’s baked goods kiosk moved from the Logansport Mall to its first official storefront near McCord’s Do-It-Best hardware and lumber back in 2012, it was a big deal for the family.

Now, 35 years after the bakery’s founding, its storefront is more than doubling, to the excitement of two generations of the local Old German Baptist Brethren kindred.

And it all started in Janice Kuns’s kitchen.

Kuns, the family matriarch, started baking a few of her family recipes in 1980 to sell from temporary booths at the Logansport Mall and area farmers’ markets. Daughter Anna was just a baby and Joanna, who now runs the Kuns bulk foods store, wasn’t even born yet, the 71-year-old recalled.

“We wanted some Christmas spending money for the children that year,” she told the Pharos-Tribune (https://bit.ly/1Awnd0W ). But the baking didn’t stop with the holidays.

Janice and Marlin Kuns built a dedicated bakery kitchen near the farmhouse at the rural Twelve Mile property the family called home. For more than three decades, it’s where Janice Kuns has supervised the pies and other sweets the family is known for locally - at least, until she passed that job along to son-in-law Gerald Slothour, who now manages the bakery.

Daughter Joanna Kuns then took on the job of running the new storefront - which also carries baking supplies and includes a deli - just over two years ago. She’s been involved in the family business for as long she can remember, she said. “I grew up in a booster seat at the mall,” she added, and several longtime customers remember her from those days.

For her and mother Janice, moving the bakery will be quite the adjustment.

The family business got the key to the 4,000-square-foot space next door to their current storefront at 2845 E. Market St. on Jan. 2. It had formerly been the site of the Pyone Cho Asian Market, which recently moved to the former Bureau of Motor Vehicles office at the Logansport Mall. The Kuns family members immediately started stripping the place bare, preparing to renovate it so the bakery and bulk foods store can move in there.

Once it does, the store will broaden the variety of products it carries, Joanna Kuns said, focusing on specialty items like gluten-free ingredients that may not be found in abundance at Logansport’s traditional grocery stores.

“I think people are confused about bulk foods,” Joanna Kuns said as an aside. It doesn’t mean that it’s sold in gigantic portions, she explained.

“We buy it in bulk and we repackage it. … That’s what bulk food really means,” she said.

Marlin Kuns added that “we may not go hog wild at first” but eventually he hopes to carry freezer meats such as beef.

Once the store is moved - a process that the Kunses hope to finish in the next two months - the family will move its bakery from Twelve Mile to the 3,000-square-foot spot where the store’s currently located.

“That’s a big change,” Joanna Kuns said. Janice Kuns said her feelings are mixed. “I like the idea because it’ll be less hassle around home,” she said.

But other than the bakery’s location, most everything will stay the same, she said - Janice Kuns will keep helping out about two days per week as she’s done for some time.

Joanna Kuns anticipates adding two full-time positions for the store as well as some part-time positions, she said. Right now, about 20 people are employed between the bakery and the store, five to six of who are full-time.

After the bakery is settled in, Joanna Kuns plans to add seating in the front of the bakery location to accommodate the deli’s lunch crowd.

“People have been asking” for that since the deli’s lunch menu became a big hit, Joanna Kuns said. She’s planning for a vintage feel for the space that she thinks will be able to seat 20 to 25 people.

She and Marlin Kuns expect about three months to pass before the store and bakery are completely relocated. At that point, Joanna Kuns said, they’ll hold a grand reopening to celebrate.

But you can already see the excitement bubbling over.

“It’s really kind of a dream we’ve always had,” Joanna Kuns said.


Information from: Pharos-Tribune, https://www.pharostribune.com

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