Decorating for Mom

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By Amy Ryffel-Kragh

“I’m sure she’ll like this cake,” said second grader Alex Hardy.

Hardy, along with about 200 other students from Hammett Bowen Jr. Elementary School, participated in the Mother’s Day Publix Cake Decorating Day.

“The kids love to do this,” said Robert Vadney, bakery manager at the Canopy Oaks Publix.

The students headed to the art room to decorate the cakes, which were in the shape of a heart. The wide-eyed students anxiously listened to the directions given by bakery staff and awaited the decorating process.

The pre-made cakes had white icing on them to start, but that did not stop some students from being pretty generous with the pink, green and purple frosting provided by Publix. To add more decoration to the sweet dessert, the children added plastic rings, hearts, and Mom-related signs.

Student Jacob Ambrosia carefully designed his cake. Though he was not able to give it to his mom, Jen, on Mother’s Day — she was out of town, he planned to put it in the refrigerator to keep it fresh.

Madisen Wolter decorated a cake for her grandmother and great- grandmother. She planned to give them each a singing stuffed animal and make them cards. Wolter said she saved up her own money to buy her Mother’s Day gifts.

To pay for her cake, Annabella Derasanovo asked her aunt to donate to the cause. In addition to her Publix creation, she planned to give her mom coupons the students made in class. Each coupon represents a different task the child will do for mom, she explained.

In addition to giving her mother the cake, Breanna Anderson planned to give her mom a giant card, which she planned to make the weekend of the holiday.

Before each child headed out the door with their cake, they were given a Mother’s Day card courtesy of Publix. The card had coupons to the store on the back.

As part of the Mother’s Day fundraiser, Publix gave back to the school $1.50 for each cake that students purchased for $6.50. The supermarket has hosted the cake-decorating day for about the last six years. The Publix at Canopy Oaks also visited Dunnellon Elementary School on Thursday, where about 220 students ordered cakes for mom.