Alice and Bryan Pax are excited to open their new bakery in Columbia. Maybe as excited as their kids.
Colton, 9, and Addie, 11, have been growing up in Howard County baking cakes and banana bread with their mother, and their parents will soon manage a Nothing Bundt Cakes location in Columbia.
“They loved baking with us, and they’re very excited for the bakery to open,” Alice Pax said. “When I was home with the kids, there was a period of time when [Addie] was in elementary school and I was working at the preschool with [Colton]. Our time together was spent baking banana bread. I’ve always had a soft spot for baking, and it was something I loved doing with my children.”
The Columbia couple’s Nothing Bundt Cakes bakery franchise will open either Aug. 28 or Sept. 4 at 10730 Little Patuxent Parkway alongside the 7-Eleven as the other tenant in the former Princeton Sports location, which closed in March 2018 after operating for almost 40 years.
“We’re excited to connect more with our community,” Bryan Pax said. “There’s a certain joy that comes from baking and giving it to others. We can really get behind that kind of business.”
Nothing Bundt Cakes, a bakery franchise with a focus on bundt cakes, was founded in 1997 and now has more than 300 locations in the United States and Canada. The Columbia location will be the third to open in Maryland, with locations in Gaithersburg and Silver Spring. A location in Bethesda is on the way, according to the franchise’s website, and Alice Pax said an Annapolis store is expected to open in October or November.
The idea to open a bakery came about in spring 2018 when Alice Pax, who grew up in Montgomery County and went to the University of Maryland, visited a friend in Charleston, South Carolina. She asked her friend what stores were doing well in South Carolina that weren’t as common in Maryland, and that’s how she learned about Nothing Bundt Cakes.
“When I came back home, Bryan and I went to the Nothing Bundt Cakes in Gaithersburg. We tried the cake, and we loved it and the whole feel of the bakery,” Alice Pax said.
In August 2018, the couple flew to Dallas to sign the franchise agreement, and after two years of waiting for a location, the store is set to open by Labor Day. While the store will open in late August or early September, Alice Pax said the store’s grand opening will be in late September.
The opening will be a rare one in the area during the coronavirus pandemic, which has caused challenges for the food service industry. More than a dozen restaurants in the Baltimore area have permanently closed, including Rams Head Tavern in Savage and Clyde’s of Columbia. Bryan Pax, however, said he believes Nothing Bundt Cakes is set up for success, even during the pandemic.
“It was scary proceeding forward, I’m not going to sugarcoat that,” he said. “But we know people are still spending money. It is a pick-up place and not a sit-down restaurant, and other Nothing Bundt Cakes locations in the area are doing quite well.”
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The store offers four different cake sizes — from 10-inch cakes to bite-sized ones — and 10 different flavors. Customers can also sign up for a free “bundtlet” — a palm-sized cake — for their birthday months.