Community keeps the dough rolling at 32-year-old Virginia Beach bakery during pandemic

Posted at 3:28 PM, Apr 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-29 17:25:07-04

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va.— A Virginia Beach bakery that’s been in business for more than 30 years is still breaking bread with the community and proudly staying open through the pandemic.

Angie’s Bakery is a family-owned Filipino bakery. Ken Garcia Olaes took over the family business from his uncle last year.

“It’s authentic. It’s what people look for, especially the people who just moved here from the Philippines," says Olaes.

Customers craving their pandesal don’t have to look any further than Angie’s to get their bread by the bagful. There’s no shortage of ensaymada in the back, but out front, the pepperoni bread was going quickly Wednesday afternoon.

After 32 years in business, the bakery decided it would make adjustments to power through the pandemic.

Outside the front door, a sign reads, “No mask, no service.” There’s a five-customer limit inside the store and tape markers on the floor inside to show where people should stand to keep social distancing rules in place.

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“Most people have been very appreciative that we stayed open. They are thanking us; our tip jars are getting full because they’re so happy that we’re here,” says Olaes.

After the stay-at-home order was implemented, Olaes says he doubled up on his supply of flour.

“I did say that I’m not going to stop baking unless I run out of flour.”

A constant flow of customers, many who are longtime locals, are supporting Angie’s to get the fresh baked goods they wouldn’t be able to buy at a typical chain grocery store.

With the support of community, Angie’s Bakery is rising above the challenges and showing how community can keep the dough rolling for a small business.

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