By: Uriel E. Villalobos
Developed quickly after the plotting of south Pueblo in 1872 and with the first buildings established in the 1880s (according to Historic Pueblo Inc.), Union Avenue has been the cradle for many booming small businesses for over a century. And one of many businesses to have nestled itself upon this busy street is Hopscotch Bakery. Founded in 2005, Hopscotch has been giving sweet treats to the city of Pueblo for nearly 15 years.
Though, in February of 2020, one month before COVID-19 struck the world, ownership was changed and Leslie Villalobos not only was the owner of Hopscotch Bakery but also the bearer of a world of responsibility as guidelines and mandates hit the city. According to Data Bridge Market Research, “…as the time passed, government started allowing reopening of the shops, the demand for bakery products took hike especially bread and others…” Nonetheless, this has been a dream fulfilled for Villalobos, as she stated “I never thought it was feasible but I have always dreamed of a career in the kitchen.”
As one might guess, Hopscotch Bakery is no stranger to eccentricity and a complete stranger to any patron grievances. With extra care being put into the making of their treats and rarely seen but rather tasteful ingredients within such as: lavender, molasses, mint leaves, and even Pueblo’s own red chili (in cookies, of course.)
However, amidst the hindrances and toil, Hopscotch Bakery contains to carry its heavenly aroma upon Union Avenue even in times of uncertainty. Even more so with the Holiday rush. As the vibrant flow of customers grows by the day, the requisite for work increases. Cookie extraordinaire and employee at Hopscotch, Destyne Villalobos stated that “we do about 25 (cookies) a day.” A more than satisfactory amount for the contributing patrons that greet them each day. Nonetheless, she says that her job is joyfully stressful. With the exuberance of baking itself being a pivotal role but of course, the rush of customers being, at times, a tad bit exacting.
Being the epitome of diversity in their craft. As well as hard work and an upward zeal even in times of utmost precariousness. This establishment is truly a beacon of light upon the Union Avenue Historic District. Though, dear reader, I challenge you to enter the labyrinth of flavor and luscious tastes that accompany Hopscotch Bakery and I am certain it will brighten your day. Even if they are…baking up a storm.