I was scrolling through Facebook the other day, and saw a post on the History of Owensboro Facebook page about Davis Pastries. Folks were sharing their favorite treats baked there and stories about their beautiful wedding cakes baked there.

"Oh their Gingerbread Men were to die for!!!"

"I remember when they were on Frederica by train tracks by old Pizza Hut. My papaw and I use to walk there on Sunday mornings for donuts. Loved them."

"I do they did my wedding cake 33 years ago"

"Somebody went waaaaay back! Always went there after my hair cut from Fred Grimmelspacker at the Barber shop on the backside of the plaza… Best Saturdays ever!"

"My Mama picked up a Hungarian coffee cake every Sunday morning before church. I swear that sweet smell, while heating in the oven could have brought the dead back to life!!!"

Butch Davis
Butch Davis
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I am one of those folks with fond memories of Davis Pastries too. My mom was a music teacher at Owensboro Middle School.  My dad normally got me ready and took me to school in the morning, but on the occasion that I got to go to school with my mom, we would stop by Davis Pastries. I ALWAYS asked for a gingerbread man. They had red hot eyes and buttons, and I'd eat it strategically to make the red hots last.

I decided to reach out to Butch Davis, son of Davis Pastries' owner Jim Mac Davis, to see if he could tell me the history of one of Owensboro's favorite bakeries. He told me, "The grand opening was October 15, 1966. It was a festive event." Here is a picture of the opening day. "Mr. Murdoch served coffee to everyone."

Butch Davis
Butch Davis
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The location was first in Wesleyan Park Plaza before the movie theater was built until 1979. The bakery was then relocated to Frederica Street for a few years before moving behind Wesleyan Park Plaza. This is where I remember visiting.

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Jim Mac Davis wanted to open the bakery because his Father-in-Law owned Van’s bakery during the war and he worked there from 1945-1950. He always had a love for baking, so he decided to open Davis Pastries in 1966. Former employees were reminiscing in the Facebook group about how much fun the Davis family was to work with. Butch Davis worked for his dad at age 13 and became a professional baker with a degree. When Jim Mac Davis passed away, the bakery was sold in 1990.

Butch Davis
Butch Davis
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Butch told me, "The cream horns were one of the most popular items along with the gingerbread men. We were also famous for our pecan crisps and petti fours . Of course, we were a full bakery. We made bread, pies, cakes, cookies, and we specialized in wedding cakes." I've seen lots of love for their pineapple filling they used.

Butch Davis
Butch Davis
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"A funny story was when my dad was making jam for the jam cakes. He actually got his hand stuck in the mixer and we had to take him to Mercy Hospital." The nurses were really worried about his hand being so red. They did not realize it was only jam on his hand."

Butch Davis still has the original Davis Pastries recipes. He said, "I’m asked all the time for my recipes. Which I have many many recipes, but when I start giving my recipes out people quickly realize that the recipe I’m giving them is not for one cake but for 50 cakes. Or not for one batch of cookies, but for 12 batches of cookies."

Oh what I would give for just one more gingerbread cookie! What was your favorite thing about Davis Pastries?

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Gallery Credit: Stephen Lenz