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The buttery, sweet scent of baking already perfumes the meeting rooms of The Master’s Baker as Chad Weldon, the second-generation owner, starts his day at 7am. The bakers have been at work in the spotless kitchen for three hours already. The cake designers are there too.
When he arrives on those early mornings, Chad checks the newest addition to the shop—a large outdoor box with a plexiglass door. It’s the borough’s first Little Free Pantry, stocked with non-perishables like canned goods, rice, and beans, as well as other necessary items like soap, shampoo, and deodorant.
“We’ll stock it, and when our customers come in for an appointment, they’ll add items to it,” Chad says. “It’s a benefit to the people around us—for folks who need a little help after they’ve paid their bills and need to get through to the next paycheck.” Chad modeled his idea after a similar box on a church in Charleston, S.C.
He’d love to see more pop up around the borough. Though the pantry is the most visible example, Chad and his team are dedicated to working with, and for, the West Chester community in other ways.
Every month, a local non-profit or civic organization gets a free cake—a way of saying “thanks.” They also drop off cakes to food pantries and soup kitchens.
“We just moved the bakery to the borough recently, after being just outside it for years,” Chad says. “And we want to be involved in taking care of the community we’re now a part of.”