Archive for Wednesday, November 13, 2002

Crescent Moon bakery to close Saturday

November 13, 2002

Since July, Crescent Moon bakery has been a popular spot on Tonganoxie's Fourth Street.

But owner Kelly Vogel says it has not been popular enough.

After selling her last batches of pies, cakes, muffins, cookies and pastries Saturday morning, Vogel plans to close up shop.

"People just stopped coming in," Vogel said Tuesday. "We just stopped having the traffic in the building I don't know why."

But Vogel, who owns the building, said she's glad she tried the business.

"I loved meeting the people," Vogel said. "Getting to know the people was wonderful. I'm going to miss that the most. I'm not going to miss being here at 4 o'clock in the morning."

Experts say it's not unusual for new businesses to shut down. About half make it, said Patricia Greene who directs the entrepreneurship program for the Bloch School of Business and Public Administration in Kansas City, Mo.

"Half are still in existence at eight years," Greene said.

It's not always the case that businesses close because of a shortage of business. Greene said businesses often close because of personal reasons, such as a change in marital status, retirement or the feeling that it just wasn't the right fit for the person.

"It's fairly easy to start a business, it's hanging out a shingle," Greene said. "It's very difficult to grow a sustainable business there's a big difference between the two."

We may dream that the ideal job is to do something we love to do full time, Greene said.

"Loving to do something is very different than building a business based on it," Greene said.

Business owners may find they're so busy doing "what they love to do" that they don't have time to do anything else.

And, she said, entrepreneurs benefit when they have a specific, long-range business plan in place.

"When we were doing the dot com phase, everybody said we don't have time to plan," Greene said. "You can see where that got us."

It's also important to network with others who can serve as mentors, she said.

"It used to be we'd say businesses were all about location, location, location," Greene said. "Location is absolutely important, but it's the networks that really help people recognize I don't have to know everything myself, I just have to connect to that knowledge."

For more information, Greene suggested looking up the entrepreneurial growth research center's website at www.umkc.edu/egrc.

As for the future of the downtown bakery's storefront, Vogel said she's already heard some interest from others who want to rent the property.

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