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Edwardsville Neighbors opening nonprofit bakery and community kitchen

All proceeds from Neighbors Bakeshop to benefit District 7 residents

Edwardsville Neighbors, which has raised more than $1 million to ease the financial burdens of local families, is opening a nonprofit bakeshop to further its charitable efforts.

The first of its kind bakery/community kitchen is called Neighbors Bakeshop. All proceeds generated from the store will benefit School District 7 residents through a variety of community outreach efforts and impact projects. Eventually, the community kitchen will also be available for party rentals, cooking demonstration classes and for use as a co-op kitchen for local makers.

“As a nonprofit organization, we are always looking at new, sustainable ways to raise funds and ensure we can accomplish our mission of helping families in this community,” said President and Co-Founder Kathie Opel. “The Neighbors Bakeshop seemed like the perfect way to do that while also providing the community with a unique new service. This project would not have been possible without the generous gifts of all of our donors who supported our capital campaign and especially Michael and Kristie Bailey of Fireside Financial, owners of Whispering Heights.”

Opel said Neighbors Bakeshop will provide its customers a typical bakery experience, but with a distinct style, unique products, and a purpose. Operating with one full-time manager to oversee operations, the bakery will otherwise host a series of regular volunteer workers.

“We searched diligently to provide quality-sourced baked goods and favorites from local bakeries, vendor partners like Goshen Coffee, and bakery wholesalers,” said Edwardsville Neighbors Board Member and committee leader Aleah Likas. “The part that excites us most is the local artisan bakers who will come to bake in our own kitchen, allowing us to feature monthly and weekly specialty items.”

Likas said Edwardsville Neighbors will continue to fundraise through their signature annual events such as Taste of Edwardsville (expected back 2023) and Turkey Trot 5K on Thanksgiving morning. They will also continue utilizing their business partner and membership program fundraising opportunities to continue their core mission of medical assistance. The Bakeshop vision will allow Neighbors to expand on that mission with proceeds supporting a wide range of other community outreach and impact projects.

Set to open to the public on March 1, Neighbors Bakeshop is located in the Whispering Heights development at 1010 Enclave, Suite B. For more information and hours, visit

Edwardsville Neighbors was founded as a 501 (c) (3) in 2010 by Chad and Kathie Opel. They, along with a 12-person volunteer board operate the organization as it enters its 12th year. Nominations for assistance are received through the website at

Edwardsville Neighbors opening nonprofit bakery and community kitchen.

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