Cakegirls bakery to be demolished

March 29, 2010 (CHICAGO)

Cakegirls, owned by sisters Brenda and Mary Maher, created a name for itself by baking for celebrities and appearing on TV cake decorating challenges. It was located in the ground level of a 2 1/2 story building located at 2207 West Belmont in the city's Lakeview neighborhood.

The fire destroyed much of the building, which will be torn down in the next couple of days. Fire officials- who have not determined the cause- said the building's condition is hampering the investigation.

"To have a day like today is devastating for everybody. I just hope they're able to regroup and get another space and keep moving on with their business," said Mary Markarian, Roscoe Village Chamber of Commerce.

"Very disappointed" said Jolene Biesack, Smarty Party, co-owner. "Of course we would be if it was anyone in the neighborhood, but they just have done such a fantastic job. Several of our clients have used them personally."

On Wednesday the shop begins its second season as one of four bakeries on the WE TV network's Amazing Wedding Cakes series. Mary Maher is a former winner of the Food Networks' Last Cake Standing challenge, taking home a $50,000 prize.

The women may have super star clients but locally friends and stranger are offering support so that they may continue.

"It's terrible. They have everything going for them and built this from scratch and in an instant it's gone, which is completely devastating. A lot of people are offering their help and condolences," said Nicole Shutt, Starbucks manager.

There have been at least offers from other local businesses and building owners to use space so the CakeGirls can fill their orders as they go into the very busy wedding season.

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