Homey small-town café eagerly awaits its reopening

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The way Bonnie Ott figured it, every town, no matter how small, needs a place to get a coffee and hang out with friends.

That includes the tiny Clinton County hamlet of Elsie, home to just shy of 1,000 people and one noteworthy landmark, a large black-and-white cow.

For many years, Ott was a business teacher at Ovid-Elsie High School. She realized a long-time dream in January 2017 when she opened Perx and Pastries just north of downtown Elsie.

The homey shop at 116 N. Ovid Street closed March 17, but Ott is gearing up for a hoped-for May 1 reopening.

“We decided the shop was something the community needed and something they hopefully would embrace,” Ott said last week.

The building, which spent time as a TV repair shop among many other uses, closed for business a full week prior to Gov. Whitmer’s issuance of the Stay Home, Stay Safe order.

Ott said she could see where things were going. Schools had been closed since the previous Thursday, and foot traffic was already at a standstill.

“I knew we had to do something,” Ott said.

With the reopening, sweet treats like peanut butter cake and cherry bars will return to the counter. Ott does the majority of the baking, and creates arguably some of the best sausage gravy and biscuits to be had in Greater Lansing.

Ott said once Perx and Pastries reopens, staff will make sure everything is clean and customers are safe. They’d do the same for her, after all.

“Our customers have been very supportive and encouraging,” Ott said. “They can’t wait to get back in the door, and I’m encouraged by that.”

Perx and Pastries

Offering takeout starting May 1

116 N. Ovid St., Elsie

facebook.com/PerxandPastries

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