HUNTLEY – As Ruth Ann’s Sweets owner Ann Grenevitch boxed a cake for a customer, she heard the magic words that small-business owners love, and one of the reasons she chose Huntley to set up shop.
“I’ll be back, girls. It’s hard to find a bakery around here.”
Grenevitch, of Union, opened her bakery last month. It offers a full range of goods, such as cakes, cookies, pies, muffins and rolls, and a comfortable seating area allows customers to sit and enjoy their purchases with coffee. On Wednesdays and Saturdays, the bakery offers artisan breads, and like any bakery, it can whip up special-order pies, cakes and other goodies for special events.
Grenevitch’s skill at baking comes from a lifetime of knowledge passed from her late mother, Ruth, whose expertise is reflected in the bakery’s name. As for the business aspect, Grenevitch has a master’s of business administration from North Central College in Naperville.
She has taught baking and business as a marketing professor at Kendall College in Chicago and by teaching cake decorating at Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft in Algonquin.
However, Grenevitch always wanted to turn her “extreme love of baking” into a business.
“I knew I wanted to have my own business. I knew that was something I wanted to try and do, and I felt there was a need in the community,” Grenevitch said. “It was just something I could be very passionate about. Everybody has a passion, and they have to figure out what it is.”
Grenevitch, who employs three, said business has been good and she has received a warm welcome from Huntley residents, who she said are happy to now have a local bakery.
Grenevitch designed its layout to accommodate on-the-go shoppers and customers who want to stay. Cinnamon rolls, chocolate and berry croissants, lemon bars, danishes, Christmas cookies and coffee cake call out for purchase behind large glass cases. Wooden tables and an electronic fireplace invite people to sit and read, play games or chat.
On the back wall is the slogan, “Live the life you have imagined.”
“I feel like I live in Huntley. Being close to home helps a lot, and being the only bakery in Huntley helps from an economic standpoint. I think that things happen for a reason,” Grenevitch said.
Ruth Ann’s Sweets
What: A Huntley bakery and community gathering place
Where: 10876 N. Route 47, Huntley
Hours: 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday