The idea of progress and moving forward seem to be linked closely to the understanding of a desired destination. With faster and less labor intense tasks being offered in most working environments, there is a freshness in knowing that Brenda and Peter Haack of the Spring Valley Bakery still purchase natural ingredients and create their baked goods from scratch.
This couple has seen many changes over the years, like higher prices for purchasing raw products, wage increases, and insurance costs rising, however, Peter points out, “Nothing has changed, everything has changed.” The Haack Family made a commitment long ago to provide tasty bakery fresh goods in Fillmore County, offered with a wonderful customer service.
It was in 1951 when Daryl H. Haack, Peter’s father, invested in the Spring Valley Bakery. Peter grew up knowing the early morning routine those in the bakery business endure. He remembers working in the bakery doing clean up tasks as a youth, but before long he was making dough and eventually became the owner himself after his dad retired in December of 1981.
In the 50 years he’s been a baker, Peter marvels at some of the adjustments they have made as people’s needs and tastes change. “In the ‘60s, we were making over 300 loaves of white bread and customers came to the bakery each day.” says Pete. “And I was getting a buck an hour!”
Times have changed and the Haacks have employed many people over the years to help them. The present team of workers helping Brenda and Peter with everything from mixing, shaping, raising, baking and greeting customers include Kate Reed, Debby Westphal and Jennifer Knutson. The Spring Valley Bakery supplies the needs of the surrounding communities when people have parties, graduations, weddings, anniversaries and many other special events. In 1985, not long after purchasing the business, Peter began experimenting with varieties of garlic toast and discovered one which became a staple at the Branding Iron in Preston. This wonderful toast is also offered today at several grocery stores in the area.
Although Pete and Brenda invest much of their personal time, energy, and resources into this successful business, they are taking time to enjoy their hobbies and travel a bit more these days. “We are progressing toward retirement,” says Brenda with a laugh, “but not too quickly, Our customers are loyal and it’s great to have the children and grandchildren of our customers come in to pick out their favorite pastry or to assist folks when they come in to select treats for someone special.”
And come back they do! From down the street and around the world, customers plan a trip to the Spring Valley Bakery when they are in the area. Their Facebook page testifies to the allegiance people have when reading comments about the Spring Valley Bakery. Their Devil Dogs, Cinnamon Twists and Rosettes are favorite selections. One post about the bakery made by Michael Kenning reads, “That bakery…here I am, in the middle of one of the largest metropolises in the world (Tokyo-Yokohama, about 22 million people), and have access to some of the best French, German, and Italian bakeries in the world and I still miss the bakery there…”
Progress is moving in a direction with a purpose. Brenda and Pete Haack set their focus on providing a quality product which they can be proud to offer the people in Fillmore County. The devotion their customers have shown to them over the years has been remarkable and the Haacks look forward to serving those who have bakery needs for many years.
“We’re still here” chuckles Pete, “and that is progress.”
The Spring Valley Bakery is located at 117 S Broadway Ave, Spring Valley, Minn., and their phone number is (507) 346-2936. The bakery is open Wednesday through Saturday 7:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.