Cookie Monster might want to move to Comstock Park just to be near Cookie Chicks. Owners Holly del Rosario and Tami Pelham, who started the cookie making business in 2015, moved to 3979 West River Dr. in downtown Comstock Park in 2017 to accommodate their expansion into making Fruit Bouquets for 1-800-FLOWERS.
They had been operating out of del Rosario’s home in Ada where she has a commercial-grade kitchen, but when they acquired a contract with 1-800-FLOWERS in December 2016 to do Fruit bouquets they needed a space dedicated to their growing business. del Rosario said the Comstock Park location has worked well for the business.
“When I was considering locations for my business, I didn’t really know about it (Comstock Park), she said. “When I read an ad on Craigslist about a great space, centrally-located to all the highways, plenty of parking with an address on the busy West River Drive with reasonable terms, I knew that I would not find any better fit than here.”
del Rosario said the location, along with support of the community has worked out so well that they are looking into expanding into a nearby space. They’ve already brought other small food start-ups such as Lost Village Pierogi and Julie’s Pies of Rockford into the kitchen “to give them a chance to test the viability of their business.”
Cookie Chicks make “bake to order” cookies made with natural ingredients – pure cane sugar, pure vanilla – and no preservatives. Their motto is “a Cookie Chick cookie is worth the calories.” The business is by order and many of their customers are corporations who order gift boxes of cookies for clients or cookies for events. The product is made and delivered the same day. With the partnership with 1-800-FLOWERS, they expanded into doing bouquets of flower-shaped fruit, and they do a combo of fruit and cookie bouquets, including custom made bouquets. Pictures of their creations can be seen on their Facebook page. Cookies can be custom packaged with a special logo or for a holiday or special occasion like a birthday. Their delivery area extends west to Lake Michigan, north to Cedar, south to Middleville, and east to Lake Odessa.
The revamped space is a homey kitchen with white cupboards the two found at a Habitat for Humanity Restore. A massive ten by four foot stainless steel table dominates the main room, and there is a stainless steel refrigerator, commercial sink, and a microwave. del Rosario said the idea was to make the kitchen “look less commercial, more like a homey feel for other uses.” The 750 square foot space is available to rent for events like cooking or wine and bouquet classes. There are a couple of bistro tables and chairs in front of the shop so people walking or riding bikes on the White Pine Trail can sit and have a cookie and coffee. There’s even treats and water bowls for canine friends.
del Rosario and Pelham met while volunteering at the Cannonsburg Challenged Ski Association, a program that provides adaptive ski lessons for people with disabilities. Pelham, who lives in Lake Odessa and works for the State Department of Human Services in Lansing, brought cookies for the kids and volunteers who raved about good they were. In 2015 del Rosario was looking for a job after being downsized from her job in communications marketing at Amway, and they went into business.
del Rosario has a degree in marketing from the University of Connecticut and a Master’s degree in international marketing from Thunderbird University in Arizona. She lives in Ada with her husband who is an engineer. The couple has one grown son and one who will be a freshman at Kent Innovative High School. When she’s not working (which is rare) she enjoys cooking, skiing, time with family and friend, going out with their two therapy dogs, and volunteering.