At the heart of New Jersey Shore Towns are the local businesses that are a part of the fabric of each community. Both Jersey Shore Locals and Vacationers understand there is nothing better than visiting the local bakery or pizza shop with the great smells that encompass you while you talk to your neighbors and then bring home something delicious to enjoy at home.

For Maeve McNamara and her family, Avalon is one of those South Jersey Shore Towns.  When she had the opportunity to open her own bakery, especially at the location of the original Kohler's Bakery on 27th Street, the idea Avalon's newest bakery was born.  After their soft opening in 2023 and then closed for a couple of months this winter to prepare for the 2024 season, McNamara is ready for the Grand Opening of the new High Dune Baking Company:

"We chose to re-brand because our choice to open in November meant we only had two months to create an entirely new business from the ground up. That meant doing work on the building, buying every piece of equipment needed to operate, developing our original recipes, and creating a brand." explained owner Maeve Mcnamara. "We started out as '27th Street Bakery' because it worked, but we hadn't given it the time and careful thought that we had wanted. High Dune Baking Co. represents our commitment to preserving the history and traditions of Avalon, while also embracing the future that we want to contribute to on the island."

New Bakery at 27th Street and Dune Drive in Avalon, NJ
Photo from Google Maps

Starting March 16th and 17th, High Dune Baking Company will be open Saturdays and Sundays from 8 am to 2 pm during March and April. The tradition of a small-town bakery at the corner of 27th Street and Dune Drive in Avalon will continue, something that Maeve Mcnamara is very familiar with:

"Some of my earliest memories are of being at 'The Bakery' as we always referred to it, was bought from Bern and Marcia Bischoff by my aunt and uncle, Mary and Martin McNamara, and later run by my two aunts when Martin sold his share to their youngest sister Christina. It was always a family thing, with everyone pitching in to help when they were short-staffed. Those early years were some of the happiest times of my life, just being surrounded by my family for the whole summer in Avalon."

High Dune Baking Company in Avalon, New Jersey
Photo courtesy of High Dune Baking Company

Those experiences working with her family in Avalon laid the groundwork to what is today High Dune Baking Company. Maeve McNamara and her husband, Andrew Stanton, have over 30 years of hospitality experience combined and they are excited for the 2024 season starting March 16th:

"Our aim is to provide the staples everyone loves and expects while using the space to experiment with new lines of pastries and desserts. Savory options are going to be a large focus for us, because as much as everyone loves a sticky bun or donut in the morning, you don't always want sweets to start your day or later in the afternoon."

Maeve McNamara and her husband, Andrew Stanton, owners of High Dune Baking Company in Avalon, NJ
Photo courtesy of High Dune Baking Company

"I'm also looking forward to seeing our customers again. I feel like I got to know so many more people in town over the weeks we were open in the fall and I'm excited to welcome them back.  In that same vein, both Andrew and I are eager to welcome all of the new faces come summertime, those who may have read reviews from our soft opening but haven't had the chance to check us out yet."

One of those staples at High Dune Baking Company will be their Cinnamon Buns, a style they learned from Walt Hohman of the popular Ward's Pastry in Ocean City. A great example of not just the diverse options that will be available when the Bakery opens on March 16th, but a reflection of how Maeve McNamara is embracing the South Jersey Traditions that are important to both locals and vacations:

"Community is so important to us as humans, as we all seek a sense of belonging and stability. That's something I learned bartending as I got to know my regulars. For so many of them, it wasn't about just wanting a place to drink and eat (but instead) about wanting somewhere they could go and feel like they belonged.

High Dune Baking Company located on 27th street in Avalon, NJ
Photo courtesy of High Dune Baking Company

That is what we want to create at High Dune Baking Company, a place where you not only get a great product but where you have a great experience.....Andrew and I will be working our absolute hardest to create this atmosphere. We hope that when you visit us, you feel both a little nostalgic for the past but excited about the future, while ultimately savoring the gift of the present moment."

High Dune Baking Company plans to be open from March to December with extended hours during the 2024 Summer Season in Avalon.  They saw great local support when they had their soft open back in November and look forward to being open for more than just the busy Summer months in Avalon.  For more information about the new Bakery in South Jersey, you can visit their website here.

10 Favorite Things about Cape May County, NJ

The history of Cape May County predates the formation of the United States of America by about 100 years as it was one of the first counties established in what was originally known as the West New Jersey Provence. Cape May County's historical records go back as far as 1685 and the County was originally established in 1692. Cape May County has been a huge part of my life and that of my family's for decades, so I wanted to share with you my favorite aspects of the southern most County in the state of New Jersey.

Gallery Credit: Josh Hennig/Townsquare Media

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