Dancing Donuts in Warwood is a destination "sweet spot" for area residents seeking doughnuts, cakes, danishes, breads and even pretzel-wrapped hot dogs.
Renda Muklewicz drives regularly to the shop in the Warwood Plaza from her home in Bridgeport to purchase the goods baked fresh there each day.
"It's hard to find a real bakery," she explained.
Photo by Joselyn King
John Angius, left, owner of Dancing Donuts in the Warwood Plaza, and Peggy Dailer, manager, welcome visitors to the shop.
Muklewicz noted she first became aware of the shop through her son's former girlfriend, who purchased birthday cakes there.
"The girlfriend is gone, but we're still buying the cakes," she added.
Peggy Dailer, manager of Dancing Donuts, said the shop is especially proud of their cakes. Customers even may order wedding cakes from the bakery.
Dailer first opened her Suzie Q bakery on Washington Avenue in Wheeling in 1997, and later opened a second shop in the Warwood Plaza. When local steel plants were in full operation, she says she sold as many as 300 pies a day.
Dailer sold the shop seven years ago. But John Angius - owner of the Subway and DiCarlo's Pizza franchises in the Warwood Plaza - said he always "kept an eye on" someday purchasing the doughnut business.
Earlier this year, Angius got the opportunity, and he quickly called Dailer to come back and manage his new doughnut shop. Dancing Donuts opened June 18. Not only did Dailer return to the shop, but the four employees from her original crew left their jobs to come back and sell doughnuts.
"We are really pleased with the business we've had ... people really like this bakery ..." she said. "We're a nice, little neighborhood bakery. It's hard to compete against grocery stores because people find them convenient. It takes a little more effort to come here."
The most popular item in the shop is the basic glazed doughnut, with pepperoni rolls a close second, according to Dailer. She explained Dancing Donuts make their rolls out of bread dough and not pizza dough as most bakeries do.
Angius also hopes to start what he calls "something unusual" at the shop - a morning delivery service to businesses in the Warwood and Wheeling areas.
He is seeking a driver to take on the duty.