Swiss Maid Bakery in the Woodstock Square will close its doors for good Saturday.
The bakery has been in Woodstock for decades, but the family business goes back to the 1920s when Paul Stricker’s grandparents opened a bakery on North Avenue in Chicago. The two opened Swiss Maid Bakery in Harvard in the 1940s. Stricker’s parents moved the bakery to a new location in 1968 and the Woodstock location opened in 1974, Stricker said.
Paul, Eric and Kurt Stricker took over the family business in the late ’80s and sold the Woodstock location to Kevin Olesen last year. Olesen is a fourth-generation baker whose family owns bakeries in Wisconsin, Paul Stricker said.
Olesen walked out Monday, Paul Stricker said.
“He basically walked out and handed me the keys,” said Paul Stricker, who owns the building and financed the business for Olesen. “I don’t know what is going to happen.”
Olesen couldn’t be reached by phone Friday.
Paul Stricker said Olesen left the shop in a state of disrepair, which is part of the reason the store is closing.
“It’s a fantastic location with a lot of great customers,” Paul Stricker said. “But he didn’t take care of it.”
Paul Stricker said he was sad to see the shop go.
“I am sick about the whole thing,” he said. “This is the thing that is happening to small retail bakeries. It’s a tough business. Not everyone is made up for it.”
The Woodstock bakery, 122 N. Benton St., will be open 5 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. The Harvard store, 104 E. Brainard St., remains open.