CHAMPAIGN — The Great Harvest Bread Company shop and bakery in Champaign has been a labor of love for Terri Burdick.
Now she’s wrapping up its final days in business and is hoping customers will stop in to say goodbye and stock up on breads to freeze.
“We’ve loved sharing our amazing breads and sweets, donating to important events throughout the community, making friends with customers and being part of your daily bread and family traditions,” she and her husband, David, said in a Facebook post Monday announcing that the bakery/shop at 2149 S. Neil St. will close permanently at 1 p.m. Saturday.
Terri and David Burdick bought the Great Harvest franchise in Champaign in 2016, according to Terri Burdick, who has been operating the business while her husband has been employed elsewhere.
Changing family responsibilities drove the couple to begin seeking a buyer a year ago, Terri Burdick said.
There was a lot of interest, she said, and she and her husband are still receptive to a buyer.
But without a sale lined up at this point, Burdick said, they decided it was time to close.
“We think it’s a community treasure,” she said.
Great Harvest Bread Company is a chain of more than 200 bakery/shops, each of which mill their own flour and make and bake bread fresh on site each day.
The Champaign location opened in 2000. Its original owners began looking for a buyer to take over the business in 2015.
An online announcement stating that the Champaign franchise was again seeking a buyer said the new owners have strengthened relationships and infrastructure since taking over.
Great Harvest has been a regular vendor at Urbana’s Market at the Square farmer’s market, with its participation in the weekly event bringing in sales equal to another full business day, according to the sale announcement.
The Champaign bakery is still taking orders from customers who want to stock up before it clsoes. The breads will keep in the freezer up to a year if they’re double-bagged, Burdick said.
“We would love people to come in and redeem what’s left on their bread cards,” she said.
Burdick said she wants to thank the community.
And, she said, “We just felt really honored to be part of the Great Harvest family.”
Burdick said she couldn’t choose just one favorite Great Harvest bread.
“It’s like picking your favorite child,” she said.