Grand Lake couple rises to occasion, buys local bakery |

Grand Lake couple rises to occasion, buys local bakery

Tonya Bina
Grand County, Colorado

Former Winter Park Carver’s Bakery and Cafe owners for 11 years, Simon and Candy O’Connor are back in the saddle with a sunrise eatery in Grand Lake.

The O’Connors purchased Grand Lake’s Black Bear Bakery on Dec. 2 and reopened it as Blue Water Cafe on Dec. 20.

The cafe on Grand Lake’s Garfield Street went up for sale rather abruptly, and Simon said his and his wife’s decision to purchase it was spontaneous.

“We kind of walked in on it ” we weren’t planning it at all,” Simon said.

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The airy coffee shop with a view of Grand Lake was something they couldn’t pass up.

“It’s nice to have the contact with people,” Simon said.

Last spring, they opened Grand Lake’s first rowing skull rental business called Mountain Row Tech, now renamed “H20,” gearing up for its second summer season.

Its location on Pitkin Street has been reinvented with an added book store owned by Avis Gray, open on weekends through winter. The O’Connors have plans to accompany boats and books with made-to-order food or beverages by next summer.

Baked goods such as fresh breads daily and pastries are the Blue Water Bakery’s specialty, they said. Already the couple has been filling orders for cakes, desserts and several requests for rye bread.

On Thursday, Simon had plans to fill one person’s order for pumpernickel bagels.

His favorite mode of marketing is bringing boxed baked goods to local merchants in town.

The cafe’s blackboard menus have about five breakfast items and lunches featuring sandwiches such as Turkey and Brie, a Blue Water Club, Grilled Vege and Hot Ham and Salami, plus a grilled chicken salad.

“People seem to be liking it,” Candy said.

The cafe also plays host to another activity: skating.

Against one wall in the cafe is a rack of ice skates.

The O’Connors are lending the skates out as a town courtesy and as part of the honor system to those who want to use the town’s skating rink by the town park.

The Blue Water Bakery is open from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, seven days a week.

” Tonya Bina can be reached at 887-3334 ext. 19603 or e-mail

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