Pam Bowshier has been building a reputation for her bread one farmers market at a time, selling sweet rolls, cookies and cinnamon bread to customers in Urbana, Mechanicsburg and West Liberty.
Much of her business at the Cosmic Charlie Baking and Bread Company is done in her kitchen at home. But the business is poised to grow, now opening a storefront location at the Heritage Center in downtown Springfield. The new location is part of a business incubator program run by the Center City Association and the Heritage Center.
“I think it’s going to be a good match,” Bowshier said of the new location, where she’ll sell baguettes, pastries and a variety of breads that includes rye, whole wheat and sunflower seed, among others.
The incubator program normally allows a new business to get off the ground, offering a six-month lease along with help developing a business plan and assistance with finances. Bowshier said her four-year-old business is past that point, but the new location will allow her to reach out to new customers and help her hippie-themed baking and clothing companies to continue to grow. Along with bread, the new location at the Heritage Center will allow her to sell a clothing line Bowshier named, “Girl With Far Away Eyes.”
“I’m pretty much past that point,” Bowshier said, “so I’m on more of an expansion plan.”
The clothing has a hippie theme that Bowshier said fits her personality, but so does the bread. They’re baked with natural ingredients, and she doesn’t use eggs or dairy products, for example.
She bakes the bread in her home kitchen, rising each day at 3:30 a.m. in order to make deliveries to customers such as the Depot Coffee House in Urbana. The business started four years ago as a hobby. But the bread became popular, and she expanded to Urbana’s farmer’s market. From there, she also began making appearances in Mechanicsburg, and began working with other local businesses such as the Depot and Everyday Organics in downtown Urbana.
Recently, she also began working with Season’s Bistro in Springfield and Cafe Paradiso in Urbana, where she provides bread served before meals.
In Urbana, The Depot carries a variety of Bowshier’s products, and uses her breads for their sandwiches.
“She does everything, from making it to delivering it,” said Lacie Gregg, manager at The Depot.
In Springfield, Bowshier said she’s hoping the new location provides more exposure for her company.
“It’s kind of going to be like a bread boutique,” she said.
The Cosmic Charlie Baking and Bread Company will be open from 1 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesdays and Fridays, and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays at the Heritage Center in downtown Springfield. For more information, residents can visit the company’s page on Facebook.