An epiphany, two friends, a beautiful historic building, and a wife's dream is the recipe for the beginning of the Pie Safe Baking Co. It was in October 2017 when Kirk Wilkerson and John Higgins came together with a vision for the old three-story 1923 bank building in downtown Forest City. Both being hometown boys with desires to see the town flourish, it became a labor of love. John immediately shared the vision with his wife Stephanie. He talked about the need for an anchor tenant on the ground floor. It would have to be something unique to the town, a place that would unite friends and family. It was then that Stephanie reminded him of her long-time dream of owning a bakery. That was it! A bakery! A place where friends and family could meet, a welcoming environment, a place where you could sit and smell the sweet scents of delicious desserts while enjoying a cup of coffee. The old bank building contained a giant vault safe. It was the beautiful safe that inspired John with the name, Pie Safe and is now the artistic focal point of the business.
On December 8, 2018, the Pie Safe Baking Company opened its doors for the first time. It was a cold day and just like flour through a sifter, snow powdered down on the patrons standing in line all down our little Hallmark town with Christmas lights glowing in the snow. t was magical! There were over 400 people who braved the weather to come out and support this small business. It was humbling and solidified their reason for wanting to create a business in a town that truly is their friends and family!