Getting creative at Cake Happy

Nikki and Jon O'Keeffe want all ages to enjoy the bakery and coffee shop

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A mom and pop cupcake shop is enhancing the family atmosphere in downtown Camas.

Nikki and Jon O’Keeffe, the parents of three children, opened Cake Happy in October 2014.

The two-year-old business started as a hobby for Nikki, at their home in the Fishers Landing area of Vancouver.

“I did not want to feed my kids a bunch of junk,” she said, regarding some of the options for sweet snacks at area grocery stores.

Nikki started making cakes and cupcakes from scratch.

“I baked my way through the Martha Stewart Cupcakes book,” she said.

Nikki described Jon as a “natural salesperson,” who took some of her cupcakes to a pre-school he worked at.

“There were new recipes daily,” she said.

“I adapted my own recipes,” Nikki added. “I really loved doing it and wanted to do it forever.”

She previously worked as an insurance claims adjuster.

Nikki became a stay-at-home mother after her first child was born.

Jon was previously a district manager for a furniture company. He also had worked in marketing, social media management and website construction for restaurants in the area.

The O’Keeffes raised an estimated $3,000 from family and friends, on the gofundme.com website, to assist with the initial startup costs for the Cake Happy storefront site.

The renovation of the former Absolute Personal Training space involved new paint and flooring, a kitchen build out and installing additional plumbing, sinks and a floor drain.

The project occurred from August to October.

“We’re excited to be part of Camas,” Jon said. “We could not be happier with the location.”

He had heard that city officials and others in the community wanted a bakery.

“We wanted to expand and grow our business,” Jon said.

The couple has been married for 12 years.

Working together has involved a lot of compromises, according to Nikki.

Jon said it is great working with his best friend.

“We have different ideas, but we are moving in the same direction,” he said. “We have the same goals and dreams for the business and family.

“We want to become a fun place for people in the community to come hang out and have a treat,” Jon added.

There are board games available to play on site.

Cupcake flavors vary daily, in regular and mini sizes. Examples include red velvet and chocolate coconut cream. Gluten-free and vegan chocolate cupcakes are also available, upon request.

There are chocolate coconut cookie bars, orange rolls, lemon cranberry scones and blueberry streusel muffins.

Custom cakes can be ordered for birthday parties, weddings, baby showers and other special occasions. The Cake Happy space is available for private events.

Beverages include hot chocolate, apple cider, hot tea and espresso drinks such as mochas and macchiatos. Packaged crackers and granola bars, as well as bottled water, are also available to purchase.

Wine bottles and canning jars, decorated by area artists, are also available to buy, as well as photo frames and ella & ezzi handmade wooden disc memory match games.

Cake Happy, 340 N.E. Fourth Ave., is open Tuesday through Thursday, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and 6 to 9 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The bakery is open an hour earlier in the afternoon for First Fridays, from 5 to 9 p.m.

The hours will change starting Monday, Jan. 12, to Monday through Thursday, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., and 6 to 9 p.m., and Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information, call 450-7691, email Jon@cakehappynw.com or visit www.cakehappynw.com.

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