Sisters Bake Shop in Frederick hopes to do battle with its sugary confections on Food Network’s competition show, Cupcake Wars.
The bake shop, at Westpoint Plaza off West Patrick Street, already has made the casting round after submitting a video introducing themselves to the network. They were asked to submit a second video detailing their tastiest cupcakes.
Cupcake Wars is a reality-based competition that features contestants creating cupcakes using unusual ingredients in a specified amount of time.
“We’re just waiting to hear, it could be as late as July or August,” said shop owner JoAnn Maguire. “We’re kind of in limbo.”
Maguire said at this point she has not been asked to submit an actual cupcake. But her two best-sellers, lemon blueberry (made with fresh blueberries) and strawberry shortcake (also using fresh berries) could be two contenders, she said.
This single mother of two joined the gourmet cupcake craze when she opened her bakery in April 2011. At first, the shop only was open on weekends because Maguire had a full-time job in property management. But the demand for her cakes, cookies, truffles and custom cupcakes was so great, she decided to leave her management job, and on July 1, 2011, she opened Sisters Bake Shop full-time.
“I decided to take the plunge and a leap of faith,” she said. “I wanted to see what would happen.”
Maguire hasn’t looked back.
Today, she runs the bakery with her 16-year-old daughter, Samantha, and her 14-year-old son, Branden.
“My daughter and I both do the baking,” she said. “She’s my better half. She’s definitely my counterpart. I call my daughter ‘my rock.’ And, my son has really stepped up to the plate.”
In June, they opened a second shop at the Frances Scott Key Mall in Frederick. There, cupcakes are sold pre-packaged in the center court of the mall.
When Maguire is not baking cupcakes for customers, she is giving her decadent delights to the emergency room staff at Frederick Memorial Hospital and the battered women’s shelter, Heartly House, in Frederick. Maguire delivers two to four dozen cupcakes a week to Heartly House.
Roberta Geidner, CEO of Heartly House, said the cupcakes are a welcome diversion for clients that are dealing with difficult situations.
“They just brighten the day,” she said. “The staff and the clients, and particularly the kids, just can’t wait for the cupcakes. It’s a gift that comes over and over again.”
Maguire said her mother’s death from cancer three years ago is why she has chosen to give back to the Frederick community.
“She is my motivation and drive,” she said.
For now, Maguire is waiting to learn whether she makes it to the next round in her quest to compete on Cupcake Wars. And, if she doesn’t make it this year, there always is next.
“I’m determined to make it on the show,” she said.